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Fort Frances Times Online Edition - December 19, 2018

Annual Christmas dinner set to go

News
Duane Hicks

For an impressive 31 years, the community Christmas dinner sees local residents from all walks of life come together for food and fellowship—and next Tuesday will be no different.

The Fort Frances Volunteer Bureau will be hosting the annual dinner from noon-2 p.m. on Christmas Day at Knox United Church.

Sleepy Owl making 'space' for parking

News
Press Release

The Sleepy Owl is pleased to be a part of the beautiful and exciting things happening in downtown Fort Frances.

We're literally making space for it!

The hotel was purchased in February of last year by a young entrepreneur. He and his team are working together to find ways to improve and benefit their guests and the local community at the same time.

Registration centralized

News
Press Release

La Verendrye General Hospital has transitioned fully to a centralized model for patient registration and visitor information.

From 8 a.m.-8 p.m., all hospital patients and visitors should use the Main Entrance off Front Street and proceed to the First Floor Registration via the elevators or stairs to one of the two registration/information desks.

Possible mill deal 'positive' news

News
Duane Hicks

Word Thursday that Repap Resources Group has notified Resolute Forest Products that it wishes to buy the local paper mill's assets and start producing packaging grades (sack kraft papers) next year already has got people thinking positively about 2019 and beyond.

“It's definitely positive news,” Fort Frances Chamber of Commerce president Mark Caron told the Times.

Beyak has purchased MacDonald Motors

News
Duane Hicks

Jim MacDonald Motors will have a new owner as of Jan. 2, 2019.

Nick Beyak, who currently owns Sunset Country Ford here and Dryden GM, has purchased a third dealership.

“Being from Fort, and having the GM dealership here in Dryden and the Ford dealership down there, it was a logical choice,” Beyak told the Times on Monday from Dryden.

'Choraliers' looking to branch out with smaller group

News
Duane Hicks

The Fort Frances Choraliers impressed the audience of nearly 300 people at the Townshend Theatre on Sunday afternoon with their performance of the annual Christmas cantata, this year entitled “Good News from Home.”

But what if Borderland residents could enjoy high-quality vocal performances by talented ensemble members more than a couple of times a year?

Summer jobs application season starts

News
Press Release

Employment, Workforce Development and Labour minister Patty Hajdu announced Monday the launch of the employer application period for the 2019 Canada Summer Jobs (CSJ) program.

Not-for-profit organizations, public-sector employers, and private employers with up to 50 employees now can apply for funding to hire a young Canadian this summer.

Emo Legion 'cash' dance set for Saturday

District
Robin McCormick
Devlin correspondent

Emo Legion Br. #99 will host its annual $1,000 dance this Saturday (Dec. 22).

Local band Nite Hawk will perform.

Tickets are available at the Legion daily from 3-6 p.m. or Tompkins Hardware in Emo (age of majority is required).

This is always a fun-filled evening and if you're lucky, you'll go home with cash winnings!

Power union workers to be legislated back to work

District
Sam Odrowski

The provincial government introduced legislation on Monday to prevent a strike or lockout at the Ontario Power Generation, which Energy minister and local MPP Greg Rickford has deemed necessary to avoid power outages by this weekend.

If the bill passes, the Ontario Power Workers' Union and Ontario Power Generation (OPG) will settle their disputes through arbitration.

FCC donates to 4-H

District
Press Release

4-H Canada is proud to announce that the Farm Credit Canada (FCC) 4-H Club Fund has provided $114,250 to 233 clubs across Canada to support various activities and local events.

The Club Fund is part of FCC's $250,000 annual commitment to 4-H Canada.

Seven Generations' new building to open soon

District
Sam Odrowski

Construction of the Seven Generations Education Institute's new facility on Agency One lands here is nearing completion.

Jarnel Contracting is wrapping up the finishing touches on the interior of the 40,000 sq. ft. building, which is set to open early in the New Year.

Annual 'Polar Plunge' coming up fast

District
Dave Ogilvie
Emo correspondent

The annual “Polar Plunge,” organized by the Voyageur Lions Club of Fort Frances, once again will be held on Sand Bay on New Year's Day.

For more info or to get a pledge sheet, call Bill Michl at 276-1334.

Jump for your group and you will receive half of your pledges for your own group. The other 50 percent will be used by the Lions for projects in the district and beyond.

District chief calls report 'ground-breaking'

District
Sam Odrowski

A 200-page report released last week by the Ontario Independent Police Review Director found strong evidence of systemic racism in the Thunder Bay Police Service.

“Our community has been waiting for this [report] for two years,” said Rainy River First Nations Chief Robin McGinnis.

Family centre given reprieve

District
Sam Odrowski

A month ago, the Fort Frances Family Centre only had enough funds to last until the end of December.

Now, thanks to a recent influx of donations, it can remain open until at least June.

“We know now we can make it halfway through the [year],” said Monica Sus of the centre.

Moose carcass abandoned

District
From the MNRF

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry is seeking the public's help in identifying the individual(s) responsible for shooting and abandoning a bull moose.

On Dec. 9, conservation officers were made aware of an antlerless bull moose found dead by a member of the public.

Fishing fees being frozen

District
Press Release

The province is making life more affordable by putting a stop to fishing licence fee increases for all Ontario residents and removing the $2 service fee.

“We're making it easier for Ontarians to get out on the water and enjoy the great outdoors by keeping fishing licences more affordable,” said Natural Resources and Forestry minister John Yakabuski.

New drunk driving laws take effect

District
From the OPP

With Part 2 of Bill C-46 coming into effect yesterday (Dec. 18), the OPP has begun to exercise new authority for investigating impaired drivers on Ontario roads.

Police officers now will be able to demand a roadside breath sample from any lawfully-stopped driver to determine whether a person has alcohol in their body without first having to suspect the motorist has been drinking.

Grant given to turn old school into housing units

District
Press Release

The Citizens for Backus/AB is pleased to announce the award of a $10,000 Minnesota Historical and Cultural grant to hire a qualified professional architect to prepare a Conditions Assessment of the historic 1914 Alexander Baker School.

This assessment will serve as a guide to preservation planning for the building, which is listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places.

Tips to keep your smile merry and bright

Health & Wellness
From the ODA

Dentists across Ontario hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday season, and are gifting you with helpful dental tips to keep it a merry time for your mouth.

Whether you're staying in with family and friends, or heading out to parties between now and New Year's, the Ontario Dental Association (ODA) wants you to enjoy the festivities while keeping these four “S”s in mind.

Meat thermometer worth weight in gold

Health & Wellness

Over the years, I've discovered many simple methods that will help to easily perfect the meals that we serve.

Some are so obvious, like a meat thermometer. Yet it's bizarre when I come across a household that does not have one.

Sr. spikers shine in Thunder Bay

Sports
Jamie Mountain

It was a weekend to remember for the Muskie senior girls' volleyball team.

The black-and-gold went a perfect 7-0 en route to claiming the title at the Tiger Spike-off tournament held Friday and Saturday in Thunder Bay.

Fort High beat the St. Thomas Aquinas Saints (Kenora) in three sets by scores of 25-14, 14-25, and 16-14 in Saturday's final to snare the gold.

Juniors look to polish offence

Sports
Jamie Mountain

There's always a learning curve in sports at the junior level and the Muskie boys' basketball team is starting to learn what it takes to be successful.

The Muskies nabbed their first win of the season with an exciting 56-52 victory over the visiting Kenora Broncos on Thursday afternoon that improved their NorWOSSA record to 1-2.

Deadline looming for squash tourney sign-up

Sports
Staff

The sign-up list for the annual Boxing Day tournament hosted by the Sunset Country Squash Club currently is full while the list for the 32nd-annual La Place Rendez-Vous Open is nearly full.

Club member Bob Tkachuk noted the deadline for those who are interested in entering is tomorrow.

Muskie boys still seeking consistency

Sports
Jamie Mountain

Although his squad snagged a pair of wins over the Kenora Broncos within a three-day span last week, Muskie boys' hockey team head coach Jordan Sinclair is hoping his charges can start to play with more consistency.

The black-and-gold improved their NorWOSSA record to 4-2 following a 6-3 win Thursday night in Kenora and then a 3-1 victory here Saturday night.

Jr. spikers gunning to stay dominant

Sports
Jamie Mountain

The Muskie junior girls' volleyball team dominated the NorWOSSA landscape last season and it's looking like it will be much the same this season.

The black-and-gold went a perfect 8-0 en route to the claiming the title at a tournament hosted by the Dryden Eagles on Friday and Saturday.

Owls' hoops squads stumble at home

Sports
Jamie Mountain

The Rainy River Owls' junior and senior boys' basketball teams will be hoping the second half of their seasons brings better fortunes.

Both squads dropped their games last Tuesday and Wednesday against the visiting Red Lake Rams and Sioux Lookout Warriors in NorWOSSA 'A' action.

Lakers' play lacking in urgency: coach

Sports
Jamie Mountain

There weren't many positives for Fort Frances Lakers' head coach and general manager Wayne Strachan to draw from after a lacklustre effort from his squad Friday night.

The Dryden GM Ice Dogs stormed out to a 3-0 first-period lead and faced little resistance from the hosts en route to a 6-2 win at the Ice For Kids Arena.

Muskie girls rewarded for hard work

Sports
Jamie Mountain

They have improved steadily all season and were rewarded for their hard work over the weekend.

Issy Taylor scored twice to pace the Muskie girls' hockey team to a 2-1 win over the Lord Selkirk Royals (Winnipeg) on Saturday afternoon to claim the 'B'-side title at the annual K-Town Classic Tournament in Kenora.

Owls' spike squads aim to keep rolling

Sports
Staff

Last week was a dominant one for the Rainy River Owls' junior girls' volleyball team.

The squad earned a pair of 3-0 sweeps against the visiting Red Lake Rams and Sioux Lookout Warriors last Tuesday and Wednesday to improve its NorWOSSA 'A' record to 3-1.

Seniors aiming to improve all aspects

Sports
Jamie Mountain

Every game you play is a learning experience and the Muskie senior boys' basketball team is hoping it can use the lessons learned over the weekend to improve moving forward.

The Muskies went winless in five games at the Sun Spartan Invitational in Brandon, Man. on Friday and Saturday while competing against some of the best teams from that province.

Little carolers

Photos
Sam Odrowski

St. Michael's students brought some Christmas cheer to Rainycrest on Friday afternoon when the kindergarten classes performed classic Christmas carols in Hallett Hall. Following their performances, the youngsters handed out Christmas-themed drawings to the home's residents.

Cantata guitarist

Photos
Duane Hicks

Ron Hines performed an original tune, “What Christmas Really Means,” just prior to the Fort Frances Choraliers taking the stage Sunday afternoon at the Townshend Theatre. He was accompanied by his wife, Lee-Ann Hines, on piano and backing vocals.

Cantata duet

Photos
Duane Hicks

The duet of Pam Guild and Tania Cox beautifully sang “It's Christmas Everywhere” just before the rest of their fellow Choraliers took the stage with them here Sunday.

7 Gens building

Photos
Sam Odrowski

Jarnel Contracting nearly has finished the Seven Generations Education Institute's new $16-million building on Agency One lands here. The 40,000 sq. ft. facility, which will house all of SGEI's programs, is set to open early in the New Year.

Christmas story

Photos

The Grade 1/2 class at Sturgeon Creek recorded a digital presentation of the Christmas story for their Christmas concert this year. With the help of their Grade 7/8 book buddies, they sang the song “Rejoice” while the audience enjoyed the presentation.  -Dave Ogilvie photo

Home for Christmas

Photos
Submitted

Heart transplant recipient Curtis Jourdain is home for Christmas. The Couchiching resident, who underwent a 16-and-a-half-hour heart transplant surgery back on July 23, was pictured smiling at the Thunder Bay Airport on Saturday following his flight from Toronto. He will return to Toronto on Jan.

Packing hamper

Photos
Duane Hicks

Firefighter Doug Wright was among the Fort Frances Fire Brigade members who packed hampers Monday morning at the Salvation Army food bank here. The brigade has made it a Christmas tradition to pack the hampers, this year stepping up to fill a tall order—160 hampers in total.

St. Michael's feast

Photos
Sam Odrowski

St. Michael's school staff and students filled the banquet room upstairs at La Place Rendez-Vous at noon on Monday for a Christmas lunch celebration. The Waabishkiibinesii Women singers/drummers performed songs while students sang “Come O Come Emmanuel” before saying grace and enjoying the feast.

Nativity scene

Photos
Sam Odrowski

Students acted out the nativity scene yesterday afternoon during the dress rehearsal for the Christmas concert staged by St. Michael's French Immersion classes. A crowd of parents and grandparents filled the gymnasium to watch their little ones perform.

Cantata singer

Photos
Duane Hicks

Cara Coran sang the solo during “O Night Divine," during the Fort Frances Choraliers' performance of "Good News from Home” here Sunday afternoon.

Christmas open house

Photos
Sam Odrowski

A handful of people turned out to the open house at local MPP Greg Rickford's constituency office at 276 Scott St. yesterday afternoon. Baked goods and apple cider was enjoyed by those who came out. Mr. Rickford unfortunately could not attend in person as he was called away suddenly for an emergency sitting at Queen's Park.

RM concert

Photos
Dave Ogilvie

The Grade 2 class at Robert Moore School, under the supervision of Ms. Richards and Mrs. Howell, presented a skit entitled “The Presents” yesterday before a packed house in the auditorium. When Santa got his pack stuck in the chimney, Mrs. Claus, the reindeer, an angel, and an assortment of Christmas characters all came to the rescue.

Columbus Place show

Photos
Sam Odrowski

Grade 5 students from St. Francis School visited Columbus Place here yesterday for a sing-along with the residents. The children sang classic Christmas songs like “Silent Night" and "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.”

Advent service

Photos
Sam Odrowski

St. Francis School's Junior Division celebrated an Advent prayer service at St. Mary's Church here Thursday evening. Children sang hymns and Christmas songs, said readings from the Bible, lit candles, blessed the Advent wreath, and prayed.

Narrating cantata

Photos
Duane Hicks

Michael Brady narrated the Christmas cantata, “Good News from Home,” here Sunday afternoon. The cantata retold the story of the Nativity.

On Santa's knee

Photos
Sam Odrowski

Sawyer, left, and Peyton Jourdain took a seat on Mr. and Mrs. Claus' laps on Saturday at The Christmas Store (Lowey's Greenhouse & Market Garden) to tell them what they wanted for Christmas and have their picture taken by Travis Glowasky of Studio Gibbous. Santa reminded the children that chocolate chip cookies are his favourite to eat before placing presents under the tree.

Inside dribble

Photos
Jamie Mountain

Jordon Bazylewski tried to evade a Kenora Broncos' opponent with some nimble dribbling during the second half of the Muskie junior boys' basketball team's 56-52 win Thursday afternoon at Fort High. Bazylewski scored five points in helping the black-and-gold secure their first league win of the season to go along with a pair of losses.

Tipped over

Photos
Jamie Mountain

Aurora Hutton tipped a shot over the outstretched arms of Kenora Broncos' defender Brianna Leutschaft during the third set of the Muskie junior girls' volleyball team's 3-0 win Thursday afternoon at Fort High. The squad will cap the first half of their NorWOSSA schedule tomorrow against the host Dryden Eagles.

Cutting to net

Photos

Rayman Bassi of the Dryden GM Ice Dogs tried to cut towards the net while Fort Frances Lakers' defenceman Anthony Antonelli looked to thwart him on the backcheck during the second period of the visitors' 6-2 win Friday night at the Ice For Kids Arena.

Crossed up

Photos
Jamie Mountain

Ashton Cousineau looked to fend off a Kenora Broncos' opponent and win the puck battle during the first period of the Muskie boys' hockey team's 3-1 win Saturday night at the Ice For Kids Arena. It was the Muskies' second-straight win against the Broncos after also beating them 6-3 on Thursday night in Kenora.