Seniors Services Society Receives Windfall

On the evening of Thursday, November 8,  Boodie Arnott gave a 5-minute presentation to the membership of 100 Women Who Care Salt Spring Island. Boodie explained that, as someone who benefits from the programs at the Salt Spring Seniors Services Society, she would like to see the society receive the funds that were being raised that evening. She was speaking to 127 women who gathered at ArtSpring. It was the inaugural meeting for 100 Women Who Care SSI. Each woman in the room was a member, committed to donating $100 at each of the three meetings that will be held in the coming year. As you can see, the donations add up quickly. By the time the meeting started, 127 women had made that commitment. That's $12,700 raised on one hour! Thirteen local charities had been nominated by members, and three were drawn randomly during the meeting: Salt Spring Island Farmland Trust, the Salt Spring branch of BC SPCA, and the Salt Spring Seniors Services Society. For each o…
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2018 Salt Spring Chamber Salty Award Winners and Photos

The Salt Spring community came out last night for a beautiful evening to celebrate local businesses, people, places and the many charms of Salt Spring Island. After numerous years of experimenting with the format for honouring local businesses and people, the Salt Spring Chamber really seems to have struck a nice rhythm of creating a recognition approach as fun and special and unique as Salt Spring itself. It was just the right amount of appreciative and fun and a great way to honour many of the organizations, businesses, people and places that make this island so special. The evening was hosted at the newly remodelled Harbour House Hotel and attendees enjoyed a delicious meal, wines and desserts provided by the hotel along with music from local band Sky Valley. The event was made possible by the generous sponsorship of Windsor Plywood, Island Savings, our favourite local media choice the Driftwood, the Salt Spring Chamber with additional sponsorship from PCS Pest Control, C…
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Vote: Make Someone You Know a Salty Award Winner!

Presenting the  Salt Spring Community & Business Awards!  Winners will receive a Salty Award and 30 awards will be given out two areas – Business and Community.  You can also vote in new the “Fun and Games” category.  Salt Spring residents, visitors and fans are nominating and voting for the winners online. You can now vote for 1 business or community service per category.  There will be a limit the number of times IP addresses can be used. Voting will be open until midnight October 21.  The awards will be presented on November 8th at a Gala Awards Dinner.  Tickets available soon. Congratulations to all the nominees and good luck!! PS: If you love the Salt Spring Exchange, consider voting for us in the Community Awards for favourite 'Local Media Choice'!
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Xwaaqw’um Snuhwulh Canoe Launch

After almost 6 months of work, the Xwaaqw'um Snuhwulh (canoe) was launched today to the delight of all the relations who joined to celebrate the launch. Dancing, songs and ceremony were led by local elder Tousilum (Ron George). The new Snuhwulh (Canoe) was named Xwaaqw'um and given to elder Tousilum as a gift for years of dedication to his people and culture. The Snuhwulh was carved from a single cedar tree led by Tla-o-qui-aht / Nuu-chah-nulth Master Carver Joe Martin, project lead assistant carver Joe Akerman, assistant carver Christopher Roy, and dozens of Quw’utsun (Cowichan) and Salt Spring locals. The Snuhwulh will be used for local youth programs, Tribal Journey and local community gatherings. Photos by Christopher Roy.
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Young Man Charged in Shooting Death

A young man has now been arrested and charged in the shooting death of a teenager on Salt Spring Island last September. In in the early hours of Sept 24, 2017, police responded to a residence on Salt Spring Island for a report of a shooting. When police arrived they found 6 youths present, a 17-year-old was suffering from what appeared to a gun shot wound. He was transported to hospital with life threatening injuries, where he later died. The Vancouver Island Integrated Major Crime Unit (VIIMCU) were called to investigate the incident. The man, who cannot be identified because he was a youth at the time of the offence, has now been charged with one count of Manslaughter. He appeared in court earlier today. We understand that this investigation has greatly impacted all involved. These events always have a profound impact on families and communities, states Inspector Dave Hall, Officer in Charge of VIIMCU. Our thoughts are with them, as we work to prepare for future cour…
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2018 Salty Awards – Extended! - Nominations for Business and Community Awards Now Open!

Nominations time has been extended to October 10th!! - Presenting the Salt Spring Community & Business Awards! Winners will receive a Salty Award and 30 awards will be given out two areas – Business and Community. You can also vote in new the “Fun and Games” category. Salt Spring residents, visitors and fans are nominating and voting for the winners through our on-line process! Consider voting for the 'Salt Spring Exchange' in the 'Local Media Choice' selection of the Community Awards. You can nominate one business or community group/area per session during the nomination process. You will then be able to vote for 1 business or community service per category. We will limit the number of times IP addresses can be used to twice for nominating and twice for voting. No cheating! Nominations will take place from September 6th to September 30th October 10th through Nominations are open to all Salt Spring based locations, groups and businesses. You …
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New Free Wi-Fi connects Lady Minto Hospital patients and visitors

Free public Wi-Fi is now available to patients and visitors at Lady Minto Hospital thanks to financial support from the Lady Minto Hospital Auxiliary, Lady Minto Hospital Foundation, Country Grocer, Island Health and the Salt Spring Exchange. “We are thrilled to be bringing public Wi-Fi to patients and visitors at Lady Minto Hospital. We know how important a strong support network is for people who are in hospital, having internet access can help patients feel less isolated and more connected to their loved ones. ” Diana Hayes, Lady Minto Hospital Foundation Executive Administrator Patients and visitors can access the new service by searching for and connecting to the wireless network “IslandHealthGuest”. Free public Wi-Fi will support basic internet browsing, but not the large bandwidths associated with high-definition video streaming. "Country Grocer is proud to contribute to the provision of Wifi at Lady Minto Hospital. Connecting with friends and family in a time o…
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Neighbourhood Small Grants Launched on Salt Spring

Carolling by canoe on Cusheon Lake, the Firefly Lantern Festival, public pianos, Earth Day in Centennial Park, Art Jam, and a neighbourhood potluck party on Park Drive. What do all of these have in common?

They are all colourful and joyful expressions of Salt Spring culture, local projects and events run by people who are passionate about giving back to the community and who have seen a need to encourage social connections in order to make Salt Spring a better place.

To encourage and foster more of these wonderful events, the Foundation, in partnership with Salt Spring Island Community Services, is pleased to announce the launch of Neighbourhood Small Grants, which offers grants of $50 to $500 to support projects that bring people together, share skills and knowledge, build a sense of belonging and responsibility, and respect and celebrate diversity. The Foundation wants to hear from islanders who have a great idea for a proje…

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2018 Salt Spring Pride Festival

“A World of Pride” on Diverse and Inclusive Salt Spring Island September 5th to 9th, 2018 – Salt Spring Island, BC  - It’s almost here - 14th Annual Salt Spring Island Pride! From September 5th to 9th, join us for BC’s most unique, totally people-powered, non-commercial Pride Festivities! Experience and contribute to our celebration of Diversity and Inclusion, hosted by our local LGBTQ+ community, supported by our allies and visitors. Come share in, actively contribute to, and celebrate our inclusive community - and then spread the love around the world. Schedule of Events: Wednesday, Sept 5th We are all God's Own - All Saints By The Sea, Ganges 5pm-6pm. No cost. A service of reconciliation and blessing, offered by the Anglican Parish of Salt Spring. We will reflect on the diversity with which our Creator made us, reject the Church's teaching of oppression, and offer a blessing for the festivities of Pride. All welcome. Thursday, September 6th Queer Poetry Reading, …
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Physicians Accepting New Patients

Saltspring Island Health Centre (, opens its doors on September 5th at 164 Kings Lane. It will be the practice location of 6 family physicians and a midwife. Four of the physicians, Drs. Anik Mommsen-Smith, Catherine Prendiville, Paula Ryan and Manya Sadouski are familiar to the community as family physicians already in practice here and they are welcoming two physicians who have been recruited to Saltspring to open new practices: Dr. Clare Rustad and Dr. Kesh Smith. Drs. Rustad and Smith are accepting new patients now and will start seeing people in clinic on September 5th. If you are interested in becoming patients of the new clinic, please use the web-based process at: Alternatively, a temporary voice-mail-only phone line will also be available at: 250 931-0148 to support intake, but we strongly encourage you to use the web if at all possible. Staff from the centre will be calling to book intake visits and hope to be in touch within 3 wor…
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Indefatigable Old Boys Awards Ceremony

The Old Boys celebrated their 2017/2018 season with the Annual Awards Ceremony at the Tweedle residence on August 4th. This years Awards Ceremony had been held back due to the absence of stalwart Head Statistician, Columnist, and Sausage Roll connoisseur Fraser Hope while on his sojourns back to bonnie Scotland. Quite what Hope was up to for the last few months we’re not quite sure, but perhaps like those Scotsmen still trying to get back from Argentina after the 1978 World Cup Finals, he may have gotten a little lost along the way. The number of awards handed out this year expanded with the addition of the Wimp Award (Reverse Iron Man), Defensive Rock, the Bounce Back, and a special award of recognition, that added to the Red Mist, Iron Man, the Helping Boot, the Best Fan, and the crème de la crème of awards, the Golden Boot. As a result of accounting changes made following the 2007 financial crisis and in keeping with the International Financial and Reporting Standards,…
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Salt Spring Makes the Cover of the Vancouver Sun - But Not for a Good Reason

Salt Spring makes the cover of the Vancouver Sun - but not for a good reason The severity of Salt Spring's housing crisis is well known by the many hundreds who are directly affected, and by a few hundred more like me who know people who are. But as of yesterday, tens of thousands across the province won't just think about forests, beaches, and the Saturday market when they think about Salt Spring, but also about our severe housing crisis, and how a caring community like ours could have allowed it to get this bad. Vancouver Sun reporter Behdad Mahichi was on Salt Spring two weeks ago, and wandered across the table of our new group advocating for solutions to the housing problem. After chatting with some volunteers and reading some stories people have sent us, he pitched an article to his editor and was back on Salt Spring last week. The article, "Salt Spring Island's housing crisis pushing out longtime residents" graced the front page of the Tuesday, August 7 edition…
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Video and Photos: New Bike Park Opens to Applause - Ribbon Cutting

After years of consultation, planning, design and community engagement The Salt Spring Lions Commemorative Bike Park opened today with a big turn out from the community. Dozens of families, bikes in tow, joined the project sponsors, managers and supporters in the opening of the island's first bike park. The family bike park is a dirt surfaced, outdoor recreation space with technical features professionally designed to facilitate and develop bicycle skills among children, youth and adults. After consultation with staff and PARC, the location was identified in the treed area at the southeast corner of Mouat Park at 160 Seaview Avenue. The 2011 Salt Spring Island Parks System Master Plan contemplates woodland biking and a bike park in Mouat Park. The location behind ArtSpring's upper parking lot was currently unused for recreation activities. Following an environmental assessment and other feasibility studies, the CRD and the Salt Spring Island Bike Club consulted with commu…
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Missing Person Alert: Have you seen Jeremy Daniel Oakley?

The Salt Spring Island RCMP are requesting the publics assistance in locating 46 yr old Jeremy Daniel OAKLEY. Police received a report from OAKLEY’s ex-girlfriend advising that she had not heard from him in several days. The last contact with OAKLEY was on June 22nd. He possibly moved to Salt Spring Island to work on a construction site in the south end of the Island but that has not been confirmed. Police have made numerous enquiries into OAKLEY’s whereabouts but are requesting the public’s assistance in locating him to confirm he is safe. Any information about OAKLEY’s whereabouts can be directed to the Salt Spring Island RCMP at 250-537-7250.
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Interpretive Panels Moves Forward with Boost from Heritage Legacy Fund

Island Pathways is receiving a much-needed boost of $4100 to support its interpretive panels program, which will highlight the history of heritage locations and building along the Ganges Village Pathway Network. The funding comes through the Heritage Legacy Fund, the only provincial grant program that supports heritage conservation, awareness, planning and Indigenous partnership projects. Island Pathways will be partnering with the SSI Historical Society, the Japanese Garden Society, the Museum at the Farmers’ Institute and others who know the history of SSI much better than we do, to create and install historical panels along the GVPN. Many people walk/cycle the GVPN including tourists and other visitors. The pathways are accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week throughout the year. They are true community spaces and they are well used by the four schools in the area, dog walkers, visitors, seniors living in the many senior’s residences downtown and everyone else who…
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Living Wage Report Shows Challenges Faced by Salt Spring Families

Would you be surprised to know that it now costs more for a family to live on Salt Spring than in Metro Vancouver? This is the bottom line of a new report just released by the Salt Spring Island Foundation. A Living Wage for Salt Spring Island, 2018, calculates the living wage required for a Salt Spring family to meet basic expenses. For a Salt Spring family of four, each parent working full-time needs to earn $20.95 an hour to pay for necessities, support healthy childhood development and escape financial hardship. That’s an annual family income of $72,503.19 ($36,251.60 per parent). This is higher than the 2018 living wage of $20.91 in Metro Vancouver and $20.50 in Victoria. The Cowichan region is somewhat less at $19.05, while the 2018 living wage for the Comox Valley is $16.59. In the fall of 2017, the Salt Spring Island Foundation released its first VitalSigns® report, which examined community vitality in 12 areas of special interest, including arts and culture, h…
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People Profile: Dr. Bob Richmond

Community People Profiles on the Salt Spring Exchange feature local personalities on our island home. These profiles are short interviews to tell us a little about what each of these folks are thinking about as they go about their lives and work on Salt Spring Island. Dr. Bob Richmond, affectionately known by many as Dr. Bob, is a conventional chiropractor who likes to make the profession fun and approachable. He and his wife, Mary Jane, have been living on Salt Spring Island for 4.5 years. After practicing in Vancouver and the Maritimes for over four decades, he chose to move to Salt Spring as it has a similar feel to his native New Zealand. The sheep connection goes without saying. "My preferred lifestyle doesn't include being stuck in gridlock on the freeway every morning, so Vancouver was no longer an option. My goals include a healthy and active longevity. I've got my eye on living to 116. So far, so good!" As a self-declared communicator, he likes the chal…
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Island Pathways 30 Anniversary Celebration

You’re Invited! - 2018 June 24, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.  at the Farmers’ Institute and on the Ganges Pathways Hard to believe Island Pathways has been going for 30 years. Here’s some of what we’ve accomplished: Our Partners Creating Pathways group has built nearly $1-million in Ganges Village pathways, complete with benches and map kiosks, costing local taxpayers about $250,000. This year’s pathway will extend the network to Portlock Park at Central. We’ve sold out several editions of our award-winning “Heritage Map with Bike Routes”, with posters of it located throughout the island and on all Salt Spring Island ferries. We’re launching our new “Salt Spring on Foot”, with all of the public trail, paths, and beach walks on island. We’ve put over 700 elementary school kids into quality, well-fitting bicycle helmets, for $10 per student. We’ve spearheaded the installation of 36 bicycle racks.We’re still working hard to get a bikeway through the island – the reason we …
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Work Progressing on the Xwaaqw'um Big Canoe - Carver's Host Fernwood Nature Class Visits

The 32’ foot-long snuhwulh (big canoe), carved from a single 710 year old X’pey (western red cedar tree) downed in a river valley windstorm will be finished over the next month or so for the Xwaaqw’um Project (aka Burgoyne Bay). “The Hul'q'umi'num word for canoe is snuhwulh, which means to transport people,” says Joe Akerman, local community organizer for the Xwaaqw’um Project . “The ocean and rivers were the highways for Coast Salish people. Now many folks make use of land canoes (cars and trucks) in Coast Salish Territory.” The snuhwulh will become an integral part of upcoming Indigenous youth culture and leadership camps at Xwaaqw’um, along with use by school groups and cultural events for many years to come.

The carving of the canoe is being led by Master Carver, Joe Martin from Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation on Vancouver Island, who has completed over 70 dugout canoes in his lifetime, along with assistant carvers Joe Akerman and Christopher Roy. The entire …

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Premier’s Awards for Excellence in Education - Nominate a Salt Spring Teacher!

Nominate someone in B.C.'s education system who has made a positive, long-lasting impact on your school community. The Premier’s Awards for Excellence in Education were created to recognize the enormous contributions of B.C.'s exceptional teachers, administrators and support staff that are vital to the cultural, economic and social well-being of the province. The Premier’s Awards provide students, parents, teachers and other members of the community with an opportunity to celebrate those who make a real difference in B.C. schools. The Awards will be presented annually to exceptional education professionals in British Columbia's school system working within either the public, independent, First Nations, or offshore school systems. Learn more. Nominations Are Now Open! The submission deadline is June 18, 2018. Complete a nomination form.
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