You are here

Fort Frances Times Online Edition - January 9, 2019

Labour market reforms lauded by government

News
Press Release

The Ontario government is welcoming 2019 with reforms to make our province more competitive and signal that Ontario is open for business.

Changes related to Ontario's labour market that came into effect on Jan. 1 include:

Tree pick-up to be week later

News
Duane Hicks

For some folks, having a real Christmas tree in their home is a cherished tradition.

The only problem is how do you get rid of it once the holidays are over?

Never fear. The Fort Frances Fire Brigade once again will be conducting its annual tree pick-up next Saturday (Jan. 19).

Local teen singer strikes vocal 'gold'

News
Duane Hicks

District singer and musician Anna Schwartz recently earned a rare achievement for vocal talent and knowledge—a gold medal from the Royal Conservatory of Music (RCM).

The 18-year-old, who is attending her first year at the Canadian Mennonite University (CMU) in Winnipeg, took her Level 10 voice exam back in June and was informed in November of her top score.

Alcohol policies causing drunk driving 'crisis'

News
Press Release

As police raise the alarm about the steadily increasing number of impaired drivers on our roads, OPSEU president Warren (Smokey) Thomas is demanding that Premier Doug Ford abandon his reckless plans to further privatize and expand alcohol sales.

“The easier it is to get alcohol and cannabis, the more deadly our roads become,” said Thomas.

Virtual reality now available at library here

News
Sam Odrowski

Residents now can enjoy a taste of the future at the Fort Frances Public Library with its newly-installed virtual reality software.

The library's “Makerspace,” which features 3D printing, machine cutting, sewing, button making, and audio/video production/editing, saw an addition back in November when the Oculus Rift and Oculus Go were deployed.

Pruys wins international gold

News
Duane Hicks

Local artist Cher Pruys continues to impress art enthusiasts and critics both domestically and overseas.

Her painting, “Entranced,” recently was awarded the gold medal for figurative painting in the Mondial Art Academia's International 2018 competition.

“This honour is a wonderful kick-start to 2019,” Pruys told the Times on Friday.

Rusnak has high hopes for riding

News
Sam Odrowski

With 2018 in the books, local Liberal MP Don Rusnak has high hopes for Thunder Bay-Rainy River with several goals set for 2019.

Looking back at last year, Rusnak said he's most proud of his party's successes in building relationships to secure funding for infrastructure projects around the riding.

Rainycrest inspections outcome positive

News
Press Release

In December, the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care conducted its annual Resident Quality Inspection (RQI) and Critical Incident System Inspection at Rainycrest Long-Term Care Home here.

Living with dementia in spotlight this month

News
Press Release

Is it possible to live well with Alzheimer disease and still contribute to society in a meaningful way?

Rossana Tomashowski, executive director of the Alzheimer Society of Kenora/Rainy River Districts, says yes!

'Country Jam' set to resume Friday

District
Dave Ogilvie
Emo correspondent

The next “Country Jam” at the Emo Legion will be held this Friday (Jan. 11) starting around 7 p.m.

New musicians are more than welcome to drop in to the jam. Just bring your own equipment and set up as soon as possible.

Meanwhile, if you enjoy old-time country music, plan on attending. Admission is only a toonie, which goes towards heating (or cooling) costs.

Sprinkler breaks at R.R. hospital

District
Press Release

On the morning of Jan. 3, the Rainy River Health Centre experienced a main sprinkler break that resulted in significant water damage in the emergency department, observation, and treatment areas.

A horizontal evacuation was conducted and there were no injuries to patients, residents, or staff.

Bundle up in the cold: resident

District
Staff

A Devlin resident is warning others that going outside in the cold without bundling up first can pose a serious health risk.

Bruce Bellamy told the Times that his brother, Richard, passed away on Jan. 2 from a cardiac arrest he believes was brought on by him going outside in the extreme cold.

Happy events to report in Devlin

District
Robin McCormick
Devlin correspondent

Henry and Thea Kaemingh recently celebrated their 60th anniversary.

They were honoured with a party of friends and family sharing this special day with them.

May you enjoy many more years of happiness.

Jamie Davis and Kayla Benjamin, meanwhile, we're married on New Year's Eve, with the wedding and dinner/reception taking place in Devlin.

Medical school appoints new dean, CEO

District
Press Release

The Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM) is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Sarita Verma as its dean and CEO effective July 1.

The NOSM board of directors unanimously approved the appointment on Dec. 12.

'Catch the Ace' fever starting to grip district

District
Duane Hicks

Forget the common cold and 'flu—Rainy River District has a severe case of “Catch the Ace” fever these days!

The fifth round of the Rainy River Regional Abattoir's progressive raffle now is in its 28th week, with the grand prize jackpot for this Friday's draw estimated at $20,000.

Tips available to reduce risk of barn fires

District
Press Release

The provincial government has unveiled valuable resources to help farmers reduce the risk of barn fires this winter—the time when most barn fires occur.

Alzheimer cash calendar winners

District

Dianne Lipinski and Samuel and Jean Arbuckle of Fort Frances were among the $50 winners in the Alzheimer Society of Kenora/Rainy River Districts' cash calendar draw for January.

Winning $75 were Frank Robinson and Debbie Fletcher of Dryden, and Mike Desemules of Red Lake.

Chili feed being offered at Backus for 'Icebox Days'

District
Press Release

Backus Community Center in International Falls again will offer a hot chili meal as part of Icebox Days on Saturday, Jan. 19 from 2-4 p.m. on the stage.

The cost is $8 (U.S.) for a large bowl of chili and $5 for a smaller bowl (all meals include cornbread, condiments, beverages, and a cookie).

Cash calendar winners

District

It was a happy start to the New Year for Wade Modeland of Atikokan, who won the $2,000 up for grabs on Jan. 1 in the Rainy River District Mutual Aid Association's weekly cash calendar draw.

Doug Agar (Fort Frances) won the $100 for Jan. 1.

Building culinary knowledge on budget

District

Economic focus is in the news more than ever these days and everyone seems like they're searching for ways to tighten their purse strings, especially at this time of the year when the Christmas credit card bills are rolling in.

Gladiators roar to tourney crown

Sports
Staff

Landon Okell and Benjamin Norlock each scored twice to pace the Red Lake Gladiators to a 7-1 romp over the Lake of the Woods Bears here Sunday afternoon to claim the title of the Fort Frances Minor Hockey Association's annual Bantam 'A' tournament.

After a mostly back-and-forth first period, the Gladitors struck three times within the last five minutes to grab a 3-0 lead.

PeeWee Leafs finish fifth

Sports
Staff

The Fort Frances Girls'/Women's Hockey Association's PeeWee Leafs travelled to Fargo, N.D. to play in the SCHEELS Girls' International Hockey Tournament over the weekend, where they wound up finishing in fifth place in the 12U 'B' division.

Muskie girls brace for busy schedule

Sports
Jamie Mountain

The Muskie girls' hockey team's fitness level is going to be put to the test over the next couple of weeks.

The black-and-gold kicked off a busy stint by playing in the annual Loop Weekend tournament in Thunder Bay over the weekend, where they compiled a 1-2-1 record.

Cameron dazzles in snaring squash title

Sports
Jamie Mountain

Sean Cameron had his mind made up heading into the weekend that he wasn't going to be denied.

Hoops squads to keep battling

Sports
Jamie Mountain

The Muskie senior and junior boys' basketball teams battled hard in the first half of the NorWOSSA season and are looking to continue that trend over the latter part of the schedule.

The seniors went into the Christmas break fresh off an impressive 74-52 win over the host Dryden Eagles (2-2) back on Dec. 20 that improved their league record to 3-1.

Muskie boys look to lower mistakes

Sports
Jamie Mountain

The Muskie boys' hockey team has been able to withstand a plethora of injuries and are more than ready to embrace what the second half of the season might bring.

Muskie spikers aim to stay dominant

Sports
Jamie Mountain

It's been a dream start to the NorWOSSA season for both the Muskie senior and junior girls' volleyball teams.

The juniors made quick work of the host Dryden Eagles (0-4) back on Dec. 20 with a 3-0 win to head into the Christmas break in first place with an unblemished 4-0 record.

Paper Kings pleased with Bemidji showing

Sports
Staff

The PeeWee 'AAA' Paper Kings represented Northwestern Ontario—and Canada—at the Paul Bunyan International PeeWee Hockey Tournament held Dec. 28-30 in Bemidji, Mn.

The team features local players Teagan Wrolstad, Royce Allan, Dakato Cooper, and Hayden Beckett, and is coached by Rooke Pitura of Kenora along with Corrie Trist and Jody Reid of Dryden.

Same old problems continue to plague Lakers after break

Sports
Jamie Mountain

It may be a new year but the same old problems are plaguing the Fort Frances Lakers.

A rough first period ultimately proved too much to overcome as the Dryden GM Ice Dogs rolled to a 6-1 victory over the visiting Lakers on Saturday night in both teams' return from the SIJHL's holiday break.

Schwartz medal

Photos
Submitted

Anna Schwartz showed off the gold medal she received for acing her Royal Conservatory of Music vocal exam.

'Rubber Duckie' fans

Photos
Submitted

Noah and Olivia Sivonen played with their rubber duckies after mom, Mandi, bought the first and second tickets sold for the upcoming “Rubber Duckie Raffle." The Fort Frances Lions Club has paired up with the Fun in the Sun committee to bring back the "Rubber Duckie Race” next summer as a fundraiser.

New Year's baby

Photos
Submitted

Proud parents Madisyn DeGagne and Derek Morrison of Fort Frances greeted Lux Riven Mathew DeGagne, a 7 lb., 1 oz. baby boy, at 10:53 p.m. on Jan. 1 at La Verendrye General Hospital—the first baby of 2019 here in Rainy River District.

VR station

Photos
Sam Odrowski

The Fort Frances Public Library recently added virtual reality software to its “Makerspace” for the public to use. The library currently offers the Oculus Rift, Oculus Go, and an Insignia Virtual Reality Viewer. Library card-holders can rent out all of the virtual reality units except for the Oculus Rift, which remains stationed at the library.

Pruys painting

Photos

“Entranced,” a painting by local artist Cher Pruys, recently was awarded the gold medal for figurative painting in the Mondial Art Academia's International 2018 competition.

—Image courtesy of Cher Pruys

Rapt attention

Photos
Duane Hicks

Jorja Fournier listened closely to the numbers call during a fast-paced game of Bingo at the “Tween Club” held yesterday afternoon at the Fort Frances Public Library. The club has resumed now that the Christmas break is over. Youths aged nine-12 are urged to come by the library each Monday from 4-5 p.m. for fun and informative activities geared towards them.

Colourful quilts

Photos
Duane Hicks

Laura Gosse, community engagement co-ordinator for the Fort Frances Museum & Cultural Centre, admired “Fallen Halo" and "Peaceful"—two of the quilts local resident Hubert Meyers submitted yesterday for the upcoming "Fibre Arts Festival.” The deadline to submit a piece for the juried exhibit featuring the work of district fibre artists is this coming Tuesday (Jan.

Discarded tree

Photos
Duane Hicks

Some local residents already have discarded their Christmas trees on the boulevard in anticipation of the Fort Frances Fire Brigade's annual tree pickup. The pickup will take place next Saturday (Jan. 19)—a week later than usual.

Digging it out

Photos
Jamie Mountain

Nikki Bagacki looked to dig out and return a low shot during her match against Mary-Beth Tkachuk on Sunday afternoon during the Sunset Country Squash Club's 32nd-annual La Place Rendez-Vous Open at the Memorial Sports Centre. Bagacki and Tkachuk were tied with 10 points apiece in ladies' 'B' division action but Tkachuk claimed second place due to her head-to-head win.

Fighting for puck

Photos
of Michael Christianson/Dryden Observer

Fort Frances Lakers' defenceman Dane Bateman (#96) looked to strip the puck away from Dryden GM Ice Dogs' forward Evan Walls during his squad's 6-1 loss there Saturday night. The Lakers will look to get back on track tonight versus the host Thief River Falls Norskies before welcoming those same Ice Dogs on Friday night at the Ice For Kids Arena here.

Busting in

Photos
Jamie Mountain

Nicholas Ducharme of the Red Lake Gladiators looked to bust his way past his Lake of the Woods Bears' opponents and towards the goal during the third period of his squad's 7-1 win in the final of the Fort Frances Minor Hockey Association's annual Bantam 'A' tournament at the Ice For Kids Arena. Ducharme netted the first goal of the game to help ignite the Gladiators' offence.

Return attempt

Photos

Bob Shine lunged to get his forehand on the ball during his 3-0 loss to fellow Thunder Bay resident Sean Cameron in the men's 'A' Open final Sunday afternoon at the Sunset Country Squash Club's 32nd-annual La Place Rendez-Vous Open. It was the first tournament title for Cameron, who denied Shine his 12th crown here.

Jr. squasher

Photos
Jamie Mountain

Hunter Jean locked in on where he wanted to put his serve during the junior 'B' final Sunday afternoon at the Sunset Country Squash Club's 32nd-annual La Place Rendez-Vous Open. Evan Wright claimed the division title with four wins while Jean wound up second.

Gussy pic (Jan. 9)

Photos
Submitted

Shelby Larson with a pair of beautiful perch caught recently from Lake of the Woods.

New Gold shares climb 10 percent

Business
The Canadian Press

TORONTO—Shares of New Gold Inc. climbed more than 10 percent in early trading yesterday after the company reported improved fourth-quarter performance at its troubled Rainy River mine.

The Toronto-based company said gold production at its Rainy River mine in Northwestern Ontario surged 39 percent in the fourth quarter to 77,202 ounces.

US cancer death rate hits milestone: 25 years of decline

Health & Wellness
By Mike Stobbe The Associated Press

NEW YORK — The U.S. cancer death rate has hit a milestone: It’s been falling for at least 25 years, according to a new report.

Lower smoking rates are translating into fewer deaths. Advances in early detection and treatment also are having a positive impact, experts say.

Warming trend forecast for the weekend

Weather

Look for increasing cloudiness tonight, with an overnight low of minus-18 C (zero F) and north-northeast winds gusting up to 11 km/h.

Tomorrow will be cloudy, with a high of minus-10 (14) and low around minus-13 (eight).

Expect east-southeast winds gusting up to 15 km/h.