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Community meets multi-use centre architects

Posted on February 27th, 2015 by


By Dan Walton
Pioneer Staff
As the Invermere Community Hall continues to serve its purpose, it was the setting of a meeting to discuss the building that’s going to replace it.
The District of Invermere (DOI) and SHAPE Architecture, which will be designing the new Columbia Valley Multi Use-Centre, invited the community out to a Meet the Architect event on Tuesday, February 17th. A presentation was done by architect Alec Smith to share his team’s initial observations. They laid out the possibilities that can be realized through the resources available, which was followed …

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The IPC World Championship is set to take Invermere by storm this weekend. Canadian paralympic athlete Mac Marcoux and his guide  Robin Femy shred the slopes (above). Photo by Marcus Hartmann

Valley prepares to host IPC World Championships

Posted on February 27th, 2015 by


By Steve Hubrecht
Pioneer Staff
The valley is getting ready to welcome the world.
The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) World Championship is coming to Panorama Mountain Resort and Invermere with ten days of celebrations and ski racing, kicking off this weekend.
“It’s a really big event. It’s the second most important event for athletes next to the Olympics,” said Alpine Canada marketing and communications director Brianne Fodor. “It’s awesome to be able to host such an incredible event (in the valley). Panorama is such a great hill and it’s kind of a second home …

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Jumbo legal challenge adjourned until May

Posted on February 27th, 2015 by


By Steve Hubrecht
Pioneer Staff
The West Kootenay EcoSociety’s petition for judicial review of the province’s decision to incorporate Jumbo Glacier Mountain Resort municipality has been adjourned.
The case had been scheduled to be in court on Monday, February 23rd and Tuesday, February 24th but was adjourned on Friday, February 20th and will now likely be heard in late May.
The adjournment, which was requested by the West Kootenay EcoSociety’s lawyers, came after lawyers representing Jumbo Glacier Mountain Resort Municipality and the Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development filed an amended response to …

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Local athletes capture six medals

Posted on February 27th, 2015 by


by Mike Fairhart
Special to The Pioneer
Invermere Special Olympics athletes Marlow Feldmann and Brandon Cote captured three medals each in alpine skiing events at the B.C. Special Olympics Provincial Winter Games held Thursday, February 19th to Saturday, February 21st in Kamloops. Marlow won silver medals in women’s slalom, giant slalom and super G with Brandon, one of the youngest competitors at the event, capturing bronze medals in the same events in the men’s category.
More than 50 competitors participated in the alpine skiing events held at Sun Peaks. This year’s games featured …

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Rapid response to massive layoffs

Posted on February 27th, 2015 by


by Greg Amos
Special to the Pioneer
With a looming shift layoff of more than 80 workers at Canfor’s Canal Flats sawmill — more than half of the mill’s employees — effective May 4th, provincial resources are flooding into the village to assist in the transition.
On the morning of Monday, February 23rd, Canal Flats mayor Ute Juras and other councillors met with a representative from the Ministry of Jobs Tourism and Skills Training to work on an inventory of available industrial land in Canal Flats to entice other industries to the …

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EASY EXERCISE – Hiker Grace Sander decided to share the secrets to serenity by authoring 31 Easy Hikes in Invermere and the Surrounding Area, which was released late last year. Photo by Dan Walton

New book highlights valley’s milder hikes

Posted on February 27th, 2015 by


By Dan Walton
Pioneer Staff
With the combined knowledge of a lifetime of local friends, a curious outdoorsman for a husband, and an ambition to be outdoors – 70-year-old (as of next week) Grace Sander wrote and edited a book which highlights the most peaceful trails in the valley.
This upcoming springtime will be the first that the book can be put to use, as 31 Easy Hikes in Invermere and the Surrounding Area was just released in December.
As her hiking memories were being collected for decades, Grace was encouraged by …

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Artist-in-residence at Pynelogs ships paintings off to Europe

Posted on February 27th, 2015 by


By Dan Walton
Pioneer Staff
Valley-made fine paintings are on their way to London, England for the artist’s first international showing.
Chloe Marson is the artist in residence at Pynelogs Cultural Centre, and earlier this year, her abstract style was noticed by a scout from the Brick Lane Gallery in London, England.
“An international stage and presence is vital as an artist,” she said. “You have the potential to reach a broader client base, but whatever the intention of your work is, you still want to reach them; get inside them and help …

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ROCK WRANGLERS — Left to right are skip Zane Bartlett (Grand Forks), third Sam Gaspar (Invermere), second Logan Powell (Invermere) and lead Jordan Geiger (Grand Forks). Photo submitted

Local curlers taking on B.C.’s best

Posted on February 27th, 2015 by


By Dan Walton
Pioneer Staff
A team of young, local curlers have dominated the Kootenay region, and they’ve advanced to the competition against their provincial counterparts in Vancouver Island.
Representing the local region will be Sam Gaspar and Logan Powell from Invermere, and Zane Bartlett and Jordan Geiger from Grand Forks. To determine the province’s top team, they’ll be competing in the 2015 Tim Hortons B.C. Juvenile Curling Championships from March 5th through 8th in Lake Cowichan.
“They’re a confident crew,” said coach Joe Evanoff. “They’re not going to be as experienced as some …

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Fairmont ski hill holds charity day

Posted on February 27th, 2015 by


by Erin Knutson
Special to The Pioneer
Canada’s favourite family resort and The Columbia Valley Pioneer will be hosting the first Charity Ski Day event at the Fairmont Hot Springs ski hill on March 7th from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. All ski fanatics are cordially invited for a day of fun, games and the chance to win some amazing door prizes. The event is a fundraiser for the Invermere Public Library.
“We wanted to give back to the community and we felt the Invermere Public Library was a perfect fit, it’s …

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TRAIL DUO —Tania Halik and Summit enjoy a quick snuggle. The pair have become the Ministry of Forests, Land and Natural Resource operations first ever Forster Creek trail hosts. Photo by Dan Walton

Forster Creek gets trail host

Posted on February 27th, 2015 by


by Dan Walton
Pioneer Staff
To keep one of the valley’s favourite spots in the backcountry functional for all user groups, a reasonable set of rules have taken a stronger effect after the hiring of a trail host.
The many groups which enjoy the Forster Creek drainage have come together to implement user guidelines, which offer a balanced compromise for any flavour of glacial enjoyment. The drainage is located about 45 kilometres northwest of the Village of Radium Hot Springs, and has found common ground among its regular users and affected governments – …

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Halted cull costs clarified

Posted on February 20th, 2015 by


By Nicole Trigg
Pioneer Staff
Costs related to the anti-deer cull lawsuit levied at the District of Invermere in 2012 by the Invermere Deer Protection Society (IDPS) and ensuing appeal are still a subject of contention.
Over a year ago, the society was ordered to pay court costs following the lawsuit’s dismissal in November 2013. The amount the district was allowed to claim based on a schedule of fixed rates set by the Supreme Court of British Columbia came to $12,072.13. A payment of $12,000 — the amount that had been posted as security …

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Regional district opts for prohibitive bylaw

Posted on February 20th, 2015 by


By Nicole Trigg
Pioneer Staff
Following the public hearing on a proposed bylaw amendment that would regulate lot size averaging in the Upper Columbia Valley, a motion to give the bylaw third reading was defeated by the Regional District of East Kootenay (RDEK) board of directors 8-7 at their last meeting on Friday, February 6th, with Columbia Valley directors Ute Juras, Gerry Taft and Gerry Wilkie in favour.
Instead, the board passed a subsequent resolution directing regional district staff to prepare a new bylaw that completely prohibits lot size averaging under the Strata …

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Local chamber offers staffing solutions to businesses

Posted on February 20th, 2015 by


By Dan Walton
Pioneer Staff
Losing access to the federal Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) program because the local rate of employment is below the national average has challenged many Columbia Valley businesses in the hospitality industry, and the Columbia Valley Chamber of Commerce (CVCC) has wasted no time looking for new solutions.
“There are a number of issues around it and a variety of solutions,” said Susan Clovechok, CVCC executive director.
The chamber hosted two Workplace Planning sessions this month, which explored separate methods for luring workers into the valley.
On Tuesday, February 10th, Diamond …

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Conservation officers collar cougar

Posted on February 20th, 2015 by


By Steve Hubrecht
Pioneer Staff
Local conservation officers caught another cougar prowling around the edge of Invermere last week, but this time were able to tranquilize and collar the feline.
“We dealt with another cat today, a healthy adult female,” said conservation officer Greg Kruger on Thursday, February 12th. “We don’t have a history with this particular cougar of coming into town, there are no threats to public safety or pets and so she meets the the qualifications to put on a satellite radio collar and track her.”
On Wednesday, February 11th, the conservation …

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Local group pushes for free birth control

Posted on February 20th, 2015 by


By Steve Hubrecht
Pioneer Staff
A local group here in the valley is leading the charge to introduce publicly funded access to birth control — similar to what’s offered in Europe — in B.C.
Accessible Birth Control Committee member Bridget Atterbury gave a presentation on the matter to Invermere council during its Tuesday, February 10th meeting.
“Our plan to tackle and execute this project uses two strategies simultaneously — have a municipal government champion this project, where it is taken to the Association of Kootenay and Boundary Local Governments (AKBLG) and then onto the …

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Contestants feel duped

Posted on February 20th, 2015 by


By Dan Walton
Pioneer Staff
A local high stakes contest had its rules changed at the last minute and those eligible to win feel deceived.
The Columbia Valley Rockies hold a Shoot to Win contest at all of their home games, which gives raffle-winning fans the chance to step onto the rink, challenging them to shoot the puck into a small target from far away. Those who were successful were invited back to the final home game of the season to shoot again with the promise that if they were successful again, …

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LIVING ON — Tourism Radium manager Kent Kebe is focusing his efforts on enhancing the evolving wildlife display inside the Radium Hot Springs Visitor Centre. Photo by Dan Walton

Community donations support Radium wildlife display

Posted on February 20th, 2015 by


By Dan Walton
Pioneer Staff
Wildlife is one of the valley’s most unpredictable attractions, so Tourism Radium is in the process of collecting and exhibiting some of nature’s most majestic species in the safe confines of its Visitor Centre.
“Not everybody who drives through (Kootenay National Park) gets to see wildlife,” said Kent Kebe, manager of Tourism Radium. “We thought that by creating a wildlife display for the valley, they could come in here in a safe fashion — cars won’t be parking on the side of the road to see animals.”
The …

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Jumbo council moves forward with Official Community Plan

Posted on February 20th, 2015 by


Jumbo municipality continues to move forward with its Official Community Plan (OCP). At its Tuesday, February 17th council meeting, Jumbo council rescinded the first reading given to its OCP bylaw (given during January’s Jumbo council meeting), and gave first reading to an amended version of the bylaw.
Jumbo chief administrative officer Mark Read said the amendments were minor in nature and focused mostly on changing wording such as ‘shall’ and ‘must’ to something softer (leaving some discretion for interpretation to future councils).
The resort municipality had asked neighbouring municipal councils (Invermere and …

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West Kootenay EcoSociety’s legal challenge to Jumbo municipality comes to court

Posted on February 17th, 2015 by


Almost two years after filing its petition challenging the provincial government’s incorporation of Jumbo Glacier Mountain Resort Municipality, the West Kootenay EcoSociety will see its case come to court.
The petition for a judicial review of the Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development’s decision to incorporate Jumbo was first filed in Nelson in February 2013, was amended this past August and will finally be heard in the B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver this coming Monday, February 23rd and Tuesday, February 24th.
The Pioneer attempted to get comment from EcoSociety lawyer Judah …

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Shuswap Band focusing on sustainable spending

Posted on February 13th, 2015 by


By Dan Walton
Pioneer Staff
The Shuswap Band council is focusing on how to steer the band’s finances straight.
“We’re trying to get a handle on where we’re in the red, and try to thank people that we owe money to for being so patient,” said Chief Barb Cote. “The Shuswap Band will be known for paying its bills.”
Because of the previous administration’s efforts, the band now collects $700,000 annually in revenue through the administration of commercial leasing on reserve land. Last November’s election brought two new faces — Tim Eugene and Rosalita …

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