The Village Idiot: A fine balance

The Village Idiot: A fine balance

By John Hopkins
Measuring about a foot in diameter and maybe two feet in length, the cleanly cut piece of wood had obviously originated in a woodpile somewhere. It did not belong nestled on the ground among the trees near our riverbank, where Nancy and I discovered it a few days after the rising waters of the Moira River had begun their recession.

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Just Saying: Retirement - Just a Phase?

Just Saying: Retirement - Just a Phase?

By Shelley Wildgen
Cher did it. Oprah did it. George Foreman and Muhammad Ali both did it. They all retired then came back with a vengeance. Lance Armstrong did it too, but we don’t care. Cher’s still “shoop-shooping” it up in Vegas, Oprah went from talk show maven to network mogul and the famous boxers kept returning to the ring until one of them got grilling.

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Everything’s gone green: organic waste facility enjoys sweet smell of success

Everything’s gone green: organic waste facility enjoys sweet smell of success

By Angela Hawn
Waste not, want not. If Astoria Organic Matters Canada were looking for a slogan, this one would fit nicely. Just ask Al Hamilton what his company does and you’ll find his answer rings with similar simplicity. “We’re basically a compost manufacturing facility,” explains the 52-year-old with obvious enthusiasm for his subject. “We take in all kinds of organic waste and raw materials with no additives, blend them and make compost out of it.”

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Gateway to adventure: the magnificent York River continues to inspire

Gateway to adventure: the magnificent York River continues to inspire

Story and photos by Sarah Vance
The York River is a watershed that begins at Baptiste and extends through Bancroft, along New Carlow, into the Ottawa River and eventually to the Atlantic Ocean. For the cultures who share the shoreline, the river puts food on the table. Morels and fiddleheads are harvested in the Spring; cranberries and wild rice harvested in the Summer; and beavers trapped in the Fall. 

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Low budget beauties: the many highs of upcycling

Low budget beauties: the many highs of upcycling

by Shelley Wildgen
There are countless upcycling sources that will give you the ideas and the methods to put it all together and the end result is equally noble. You will have created something that isn’t exactly what it was but still has purpose. Sort of like an ‘alternative fact’, except that it’s real and better for the environment.

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Come On and Rescue Me: Local rescues save lives with social media

Come On and Rescue Me: Local rescues save lives with social media

By Michelle Annette Tremblay
As hard as she tried, Alison Sabo couldn't sleep. Restless in bed, she kept thinking about a social media post from earlier that day. It had been a photo and brief description of a big friendly dog, likely a Briard, named Kevin. He was a province away, in a Montreal shelter, due to be euthanized within a matter of days because no-one had adopted him...

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Community Portraits: Legendary artist Milne captured essence of North Hastings

Community Portraits: Legendary artist Milne captured essence of North Hastings

By Sarah Vance
David B. Milne first came to Bancroft with his canoe and camping supplies on the I B & O Railway in 1947. He was already recognized as one of Canada’s greatest artists. He had exhibited alongside Monet, Matisse, Picasso, Braque and Duchamp and the American modernists at the famous Armory Show in New York in 1913 yet he was still little known to the Canadian general public.

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Building a Nation: Two Tweed families did their part

Building a Nation: Two Tweed families did their part

By Barry Penhale
Settled in the 1830s, the community on Stoco Lake now known as Tweed was originally called Hungerford Mills, named after the township. Later renamed after the Tweed River in southeastern Scotland, the settlement was incorporated as a village in 1891. Tweed was a bustling place when I first began visiting during the 1950s...

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The Village Idiot: Beaver Tales

The Village Idiot: Beaver Tales

By John Hopkins

In his book ‘Sajo and her Beaver People’ the author Grey Owl – widely acknowledged for his appreciation of our First Nations – remarks on the industriousness and intelligence of the beaver. He describes them as “the very wisest” among the creatures of the forest, and “especially respected” by the native Canadians.I find I must also pay them a grudging respect, following the events of last autumn, although I might choose to use words like conniving and devious in my assessment.

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Just Saying: Where resolutions go to die

Just Saying: Where resolutions go to die

By Shelley Wildgen

What was it this year? Dry January? Perhaps a banishment of carbs, gluten, red meat - or all three? Maybe you opted for the stalwart stressing less, sleeping more or sleeping less, moving more? They’re all noble resolutions and pretty doable for a while. The cycle that just keeps on giving, year after year. Clumsily, we climb aboard the lofty promise train out of the winter of our discontent, knowing all the while that we’ll easily be granted permission to disembark our chubby, well-intentioned promises before the spring thaw.

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A Stitch in Time Saves Nine: Lucky Maloo’ s Upcycled Clothing Makes Fashion Statement

A Stitch in Time Saves Nine: Lucky Maloo’ s Upcycled Clothing Makes Fashion Statement

Story by Sarah Vance

If it is artisanal, innovative, and a bit edgy, Miriam Hookings is ‘all over it’. Like her artistic endeavours, Hookings stands out in the rural crowd, with a creativity that mirrors the pulse of Hastings Highlands... In the summer you can find her engaging live theatre patrons in Bancroft. She also enlivens the stage at the Arlington Hotel, where she moonlights as the lead vocalist with indie-band Natural Radio. 

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Time On His Hands: Stirling Wood-Worker Brings Miniatures to Life

Time On His Hands: Stirling Wood-Worker Brings Miniatures to Life

Story by Angela Hawn

Tick tock, tick tock. In an era where much time is spent lamenting how little time we have, woodworker Glen Finch seems to have all the time in the world on his hands. Quite literally. While the rest of us buzz through our days at the speed of light, helplessly watching the minutes fly by, this 69-year-old artisan spends every spare second...

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History Goes Modern: Ancient Sumeria Comes to Hastings County

History Goes Modern: Ancient Sumeria Comes to Hastings County

By Orland French

After 31 years of working at the Marchmont Home in Belleville, The Rev. Robert Wallace recorded several relevant events cryptically in his diary. August 3, 1913: “R.W. gave Farewell address at Baptist Church – Review of Thirty-one years works in Belleville.” August 4. “Farewell Reception and Presentation”. Then he took a well-earned holiday: “12th sailed for England”.

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Springer on Yoga: A Lifetime of Spiritual Movement and Healing

Springer on Yoga: A Lifetime of Spiritual Movement and Healing

By Michelle Annette Tremblay

Kalamazoo, Mich. The early 1960s. Summer. As he walked outside, the yoga instructor couldn't quite believe his eyes. There, standing in the yard next door was a blond girl he'd never seen before: a child, with eyes closed, deeply focused inward. She was moving her body slowly and deliberately. He recognized the ancient Indian asanas immediately. After watching for a few minutes he approached, bewildered. “Who have you been studying yoga with?” he asked over the fence. “Yoga?” She responded. She'd never heard of it.

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