WALKERS ARE DREAMING OF A PINK CHRISTMAS
STORY AND PHOTOS BY MELODY FALCONER-POUNDER
Steve and Vanessa Walker are the creators of a Pink Christmas. It is about raising breast cancer awareness and funds for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation – Ontario Region.
Vanessa and Steve Walker, of Bayfield, are dreaming of a Pink Christmas. This is evident should anyone drive by their house at night.
Their home at 9 Carriage Lane is outlined in bright pink lights and the tree that graces their front lawn is festooned with them as well. Passersby are invited to look closer and they will see that behind the vibrant color there is a message…the pink ribbons that adorn the wreath hanging over their garage doors should confirm the cause if there was any initial doubt.
Vanessa and Steve’s Pink Christmas is about raising breast cancer awareness and funds for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation – Ontario Region.
“We refer to ourselves as the O.C.D. Grizwolds” said Steve, referencing the family from the National Lapoon movie from 1989, “Christmas Vacation”.
The couple really love Christmas and making it a special time for family and friends but this year they wanted to do something extra special and align themselves with a cause.
The Walkers' home at 9 Carriage Lane is outlined in bright pink lights and the tree that graces their front lawn is festooned with them as well.
The Walkers really hope that when people drive by the property at night they simply enjoy their display.
“When we saw the pink Christmas lights we knew we had found one,” Steve said.
“We went over the top on the outside of the house – we over did the pink on purpose to hopefully surprise people and make a statement. The pink carries through in the interior but it is more subtle,” said Vanessa.
Vanessa and Steve’s Pink Christmas campaign was launched on Nov. 17 when the switch was first thrown on their outdoor lights – they will continue to shine until at least Jan. 31. Donations can be made at the website dedicated to the project, www.pinkchristmas.net. On the donor page people will learn that they can donate directly to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation in a way that is the most convenient for them, by phone, by post or online.
The Pink Christmas theme carries on inside the home as well but it makes a more subtle statement.
“One hundred percent of the money we raise goes directly to the foundation. We aren’t handling any of the money,” said Steve. “We will post on our Facebook Page updates on how much we have raised. To date we have collected over $1,000.”
Steve went on to say that any amount of money given would be appreciated whether it be, $1 or a $100.
“Donations are appreciated but creating awareness is important too. If people aren’t able to donate we encourage them to spread the word about the campaign,” he said.
When the Walkers started the project they were doing it for everyone who's had a mother, grandmother, aunt, sister, friend, co-worker or neighbor who has fought against this disease but weren’t directly effected themselves. Shortly after launching the campaign they learned that Steve’s aunt had been diagnosed with a recurrence.
Vanessa Walker's D.I.Y for 2012 was the festive NOEL that graces the fireplaces.
Pink ribbons adorn the tree, wreaths and garlands...a subtle reminder of the cause the Walkers are generating funds for.
“Thirty years ago my aunt had a breast removed and she recently learned that it has come back and she will have to have her second one removed,” he said.
This has made the endeavor even more poignant for the couple. They note on their website that the disease will affect one in nine Canadian women during their lifetime. This year alone, it is estimated that 22,700 Canadian women and 200 Canadian men will be diagnosed with breast cancer.
The couple, who have listed their home for sale, have also found their realtor, the Dale Group to be a sponsor and partner in the project, a pink ribbon highlighted on the house’s For Sale sign.
“In addition we will also donate $5,000 of our own money in the event our home sells during the campaign,” said Steve.
But at its grassroots, the Walkers really hope that when people drive by the property at night they simply enjoy it.
“It is our way of wishing everyone a Merry Christmas,” concluded Steve.
TRAIL ASSOCIATION NEEDS MEMBERSHIP SUPPORT
The Sawmill Trail on a cool, wintery afternoon in 2012 is just as inviting as it is in the spring, summer and fall, thanks to the ongoing efforts of the Bayfield River Valley Trail Association. Memberships are now available. (Photo by Melody Falconer-Pounder)
The Bayfield River Valley Trail Association (BRVTA) has had another busy year and thanks to ongoing community support, this project will continue to grow. Both local residents and visitors regularly enjoy the Sawmill, Woodland and Heritage Trails in Bayfield, as well as Mavis’ Trail and Taylor Trail both in Varna.
“Your continued support is needed more than ever to cover maintenance and insurance expenses,” said Helen Varekamp, membership coordinator for the BRVTA. “You too can get in on the action by becoming a member of this great organization. For those of you who have supported us in the past, we ask for your continuing support by renewing your membership.”
Yearly memberships are $20 per person or $25 per family.
A cheque payable to the Bayfield River Valley Trail Association can be mailed to P.O. Box 531, Bayfield, ON N0M 1G0. Memberships are also available at Outdoor Projects, 6 Main Street in Bayfield.
Anyone who would like to become a volunteer or receive additional information, please contact Varekamp via email at email@example.com or call 519 565-5442. If you are already a member and are not receiving BRVTA newsletters by e-mail, please contact her as well.
“Thousands of hours of volunteer time have gone into this project, with the goal to create walking trails for community health, enjoyment, environmental awareness and tourism,” said Varekamp. “Over the past five years we have created a valuable community asset that has brought this community closer together; support and the generosity of our landowner partners have enabled us to sponsor numerous fundraiser walks. Groups from other communities are learning about and walking our trail network. Feedback has been wonderful!”
Eggs and bacon with a generous helping of Santa
In Dec. 2011, two year-old Hudson Hessel-Heard was a little timid about meeting Santa Claus but with some extra support from his mother, Tara Hessel, and a little gift from Santa he put on a brave face.
Members of the Bayfield Optimist Club would like to invite families with children, shy or not, to the Seventh Annual Breakfast with Santa to be held at the Bayfield Village Inn on Dec. 9. (Photos by Melody Falconer-Pounder)
The jolly old elf himself will be in attendance when the Bayfield Optimist Club hosts their Seventh Annual Breakfast with Santa at the Bayfield Village Inn from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Dec. 9.
The cost is 12 years and up, $6; five to 11 years, $3; four and under free.
There will also be an opportunity for guests to have their picture taken with Santa. The profits from the photos purchased go back to the club to support youth projects as well as their “Making a Splash” Campaign.
At the conclusion of the breakfast, Santa will draw the winning ticket for the club’s toy chest raffle. This delightful chest is filled to overflowing with toys for boys and girls of all ages. It has been handcrafted and hand painted wooden and filled with toys. Toy chest tickets are available now from Optimist members, Brandon’s Hardware and at the Bayfield Village Inn. They are selling for $5 each or three for $10.
The Bayfield Optimist Club's Toy Chest Raffle will result in one lucky person winning this handmade wooden chest filled to overflowing with a whole lot of fabulous toys. The draw will be made on Dec. 9. (Photos by Melody Falconer-Pounder)
SPREADING ROARING GOOD CHEER
In December of 2011, members of the Bayfield Lions’ Club as well as Santa’s Helpers dropped in on a number of village folks who have reached Octogenarian status – that’s 80 years and over! From l-r are: Lions Mike Sproul, Tom Dawe, John Reeve, Tony Van Bakel, Dave Overboe, Craig Neely, Jeff Miller, Bill Rowatt and Jerry Stirling posed for a picture before heading out. Club members are looking forward to continuing the tradition in 2012. On Dec.15 they will be out and about bringing Christmas wishes to these prestigious individuals in the community, however, they do not want to miss anybody. Anyone who knows a person who has turned 80 years of age this year or someone that is over 80 years and would appreciate a visit, should call Lion Penny Overboe at 519 565-5786. (Submitted photo)
Back in September a very successful inaugural TEDx Bayfield event was held in the village at the Bayfield Town Hall with five fabulous guest speakers.
These presentations were taped and will be uploaded onto the TED website for others to share and learn from soon. But before they are, and in case you missed the live chats or just want to take them in again, an official preview of the five TEDx Bayfield videos will be held at the Bayfield Town Hall on Dec. 5 starting at 7 p.m.
Admission will be free but donations would be appreciated with all contributions going to the Bayfield Town Hall fund.
empties for alzheimers
Two Bayfield women would like to remind everyone preparing for holiday gatherings that their tradition of collecting empties for Alzheimer's Disease is continuing this year.
Dianne Brandon and Carrie Courtney will be participating in the 2012 Walk for Memories on Jan. 26 at the Goderich YMCA from 10 a.m. to noon and are now collecting donations for the cause.
It is, of course, hoped that everyone will celebrate responsibly this festive season and when doing so plan to donate the empty beer bottles and cans; wine and liquor bottles to their team, “For the Love of Elane and Doris”. The ladies being honored are currently living with Alzheimers, Elane Brandon, Courtney’s grandmother, and Doris Schilbe, Dianne’s mother.
Empties of all sorts may be dropped off at Brandon's Hardware in Bayfield, or picked up anytime, just call Brandon’s Hardware at 519 565-2677 or 519 565-2545. Empties may also be dropped off at Bayfield Convenience in their names.
letters to Santa
Bayfield residents will know that Santa Claus always had a special mailbox at the Bayfield Post Office Box Building on Main Street to collect his letters in. With the building now gone and the new library being constructed on its site local folks may be wondering how will Santa get his mail?
Well, not too worry his elves have a contingency plan. His special mailbox has moved to the Bayfield Convenience Store (also home to the local post office) and letters may be dropped there.
Christmas is coming and the members of St. Andrew’s United Church are preparing for it with one of their favorite traditional events and all in the community are welcome to join in.
A highlight of the Christmas season for the church will be held on Dec. 9 at 7:30 p.m. The St. Andrews Choir and Friends will present the Christmas Candlelight Cantata Service entitled, “The Wonderous Story”. Flutist, Jan Searle will be a special guest.
"Making a Splash" Campaign
The Bayfield Optimist Club’s “Making a Splash” Campaign is now ongoing in the community.
Club members and “Friends of Optimists” will be going door-to-door to talk to people about the Splash Pad project and provide them with a letter explaining how they can contribute. The Municipality of Bluewater will provide tax receipts for donations over $25.
This letter will offer details on how people can purchase an engraved brick or park bench to aid in the fundraising.
Canvassers will be wearing “name tags” identifying themselves as being part of the campaign.
People who wish to purchase a brick or a bench but don’t live in the village can now access the order form online through the recently launched website: www. bayfieldsplashpad.com. A PDF of the same form being distributed door-to-door is available on the site, just fill it out, print it off and mail it in.
Can’t wait for a person to come to the door? Forms are also available at Brandon’s Hardware.
Brick walkways similar in design to the existing Bayfield Town Hall and the Clan Gregor Square walkways will be installed around the Splash Pad giving the project a timeless and cohesive look.
If all goes according to plan, the club hopes to have the sprinklers spraying in the park by Canada Day 2013.
The final film of the Bayfield Film Society Fall Series will be shown on Dec. 13 and is titled, “Beasts of the Southern Wild”.
The film review describes it as a form of poetry, attached to images real and magical. The main character is a six year-old girl named Hushpuppy (played by Quvenzhané Wallis). It is said she exudes pure soulfulness in her role of bayou defender Hushpuppy. Her homespun mysticism suits The Bathtub, the southern Louisiana bayou backwater where she lives with her father, Wink (Dwight Henry), and an assortment of rowdy neighbors. They all live on the untamed side of “the wall that cuts us off,” which is how Hushpuppy describes the levee that separates The Bathtub from the big city beyond.
The big, bad world intrudes not long after Mother Nature does, forcing unhappy choices for the people of The Bathtub and some fast growing-up for Hushpuppy. For all of its mystical elements, Beasts of the Southern Wild is a coming-of-age story, anchored by one of the most affecting young performers in recent memory.
The films start at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are available at the door for $10. Seating is limited. Tickets can be ordered from Jane Rowat by e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 519 565-5838.
bayfield concert series
Canadian singer-song writers are the focus of the Bayfield Concert Series and the artists set to appear at the Bayfield Town Hall over the next few months are all highly qualified.
Meades Bros. Productions will be bringing to the village Juno Award Winner, Meaghan Smith, on Dec. 6 and multiple Juno Award Winner, Sarah Slean, on Feb. 15.
Om Yoga Studio in Grand Bend is sponsoring the Smith concert, with London Life acting as sponsor for Slean show. The Smith concert is priced at $30 a person while the Slean show is $40.
Both shows begin at 8:30 p.m. with doors to the town hall opening at 8 p.m. Tickets are available now from ticketscene.ca. They can also be purchased in Bayfield at The Black Dog Pub and Bistro or Luxe Clothing Co.
A great learning experience for everyone at all levels of photographic expertise awaits those who attend the next meeting of the Photography Club of Bayfield (PCoB) on Dec. 6.
Guest presenter, Deb Hall, from Woodstock, will provide those present with a critical foundational skill which will benefit the whole club. She will be teaching, in a hands-on workshop, what to look for in a good photo and how to critique other people’s photos in a critical yet respectful way.
Hall is a member of the London Camera Club and is active in the Woodstock Camera Club as the Competition Chair. She is a CAPA (Canadian Association of Photographic Arts) trained judge.
She has over 35 years experience, until 2004 she preferred to shoot medium-format film but then made the switch to digital.
Club members are reminded to submit photographs to the PCoB Flickr Group Pool and Discussion Thread in time for the Dec. 6 meeting. This month’s challenge is “a round and red interpretation within a Christmas theme".
The Bayfield and Area Chamber of Commerce would like to make folks aware that some of the dates in their 2013 calendar are incorrect. Anyone who has already purchased a calendar may pick up correction stickers at The Village Bookshop, Bayfield Archives Room, Outside Projects, Bayfield Library, Main Street Optometric, Brandon’s Hardware, This N’ That and Inspirations.
The incorrect dates are:
* Good Friday - March 29 not Apr. 5
* Easter Sunday - March 31 not Apr. 7
* Easter Monday - April 1 not Apr. 8
* Labor Day - Sept. 2 not Sept. 9
* Thanksgiving Day – Oct. 14 not Oct. 7
Have you heard the news? A monthly hearing clinic has been established in the village at Pharmasave Michael’s Pharmacy. The next date for the clinic is Dec. 18.
The Kincardine Hearing Clinic will be offering their services on the third Tuesday of every month from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
The clinic will offer: hearing aid adjustments and repairs to all makes and models, no cost hearing tests, new prescription of hearing aids, wax removal, hearing aid battery sales as well as hard of hearing assistive devices. Please call The Kincardine Hearing Clinic at 1-855-396-6026 to book an appointment.
Badminton has started at the Stanley Complex in Varna. The games begin at 7 p.m. No equipment or experience needed.
One Care sponsored Pole Walking is a popular fitness opportunity in Bayfield. Walks for women are held on Tuesdays and Thursdays and walks for men Mondays and Fridays. The start time is 8:30 a.m. Walks depart from 6 Main Street, after walking, 10 minutes of stretches are conducted in beautiful Clan Gregor Square.
“Guys on the Go” meet at 6 Main Street on Wednesdays at 8:30 p.m. What’s on the agenda? Anything goes – biking, hiking, snowshoeing.
One Care continues to sponsor several programs for both men and women to keep up with their desire to stay fit.
Total Body Fit co-ed classes are held on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 9 a.m. The classes are held at the Bayfield Community Centre. The cost is $4 per class. Please note these classes will go on hiatus for Christmas on Dec. 19.
Stronger Seniors co-ed classes are offered on Mondays and Wednesdays at 10:15 a.m. On Fridays a Gentle Stretch Class is offered at 10:15 a.m. Both of these fitness opportunities are held at the Bayfield Community Centre and cost $2 per class.
A Gentle Yoga Class is held at the Bayfield Town Hall starting at 10 a.m. on Tuesdays. The cost is $4 per class and participants are asked to bring a yoga mat.
For more information on the above exercise opportunities call 519 565-2202 or 519 565-5638
For those people looking to exercise their minds, Women’s Bridge is played every Wednesday at 1 p.m. No partner needed to play the cost is $1.50 per game. For more information call Brenda Blair at 519 565-2881. Bridge is played at the Bayfield Lions’ Community Building.
Mah Jongg is played on the first and third Thursday of each month at the Bayfield Lions’ Community Building starting at 1 p.m. All are welcome to attend. For more information contact Gayle at 519 565-2468. On Dec. 6, a luncheon for the group will be held at 12:30 p.m.
The Bayfield Euchre Club meets on alternate Wednesdays (from Oct. 3 onwards) at the Bayfield Lions' Community Building at 7 p.m. The cost is $1.50 and everyone is welcome. For more information call Lee at 519 565-2765.
And for those who wish assistance in nourishing their bodies, the “Meals on Wheels” program is now offered in Bayfield on Monday and Wednesday. A hot supper meal can be delivered to residences for a minimal price. The meal includes an entrée, soup or salad and a dessert. For more information please contact One Care at 1-877-502-8277.