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Big Island opens new band office

Last Thursday, residents of Big Island First Nation and guests officially opened their new band office.

The $1.1-million building has been a dream of band manager Val Pizey since 1983 when the population moved from its old reserve on Big Island to the mainland.

The first band office was an old house that was moved in and added onto over the years.

District 4-H’ers heading to Quebec

Eleven district 4-H club members held a bake sale at the Chapple flea market last weekend to help raise money for a nine-day exchange with their counterparts in Quebec this summer.

“Everybody is twinned and you stay at their house and then they stay at our house,” noted Joanne Neilson, who will be a chaperone on the trip along with Denise Donaldson.

‘Poor Boys’ rocking pubs -- and parties

Put two mill workers, a construction worker, and an Internet provider on stage in a local bar with instruments, surround them with crowds, and what do you get?

The Poor Boys.

The group, which officially formed in 1995 as Willie and the Poor Boys, has made a name for itself by playing popular hits at clubs and private bashes on both sides of the border over the past six years.

‘Risk Watch’ to thank sponsors

As the “Risk Watch” safety program wraps up its second year in district schools, a special luncheon is slated Thursday at 11:30 a.m. at the Red Dog Inn.

“It’s just to thank our major sponsors for their contribution to the program,” said Fort Frances firefighter Greg Allan, who also served as co-ordinator in getting the program up and running.

Rash of fires ignites region

Ministry of Natural Resources firefighters had a busy weekend as 116 new fires sprung up since across the West Fire Region since Friday, burning about 2,500 hectares.

“They were predominantly lightning-caused,” MNR fire information officer Andrew Larmandi said this morning. “There were only maybe two or three caused by people.”

OPP to sign new contract

The Town of Fort Frances and the local OPP detachment will sign a second five-year agreement Monday afternoon.

“I know our policing has improved and our quality of training our officers receive is the best,” Mayor Glenn Witherspoon noted this morning.

The new agreement will be officially signed at 3:30 p.m. at the Civic Centre, followed by a reception at the Legion.

‘Freedom Ride’ stirs up dust

Nine riders braved cool temperatures Saturday to take part in this year’s “Freedom Ride,” a fundraiser for the Northern Therapeutic Riding Association (NORTRA).

“Without the ‘Freedom Ride,’ I would have to charge $35-$40 per child at least,” noted Joyce Young, owner of the Trail’s End Riding Stables north of Devlin where NORTRA is run.