Ontario Students Against Impaired Driving Group From Confederation Secondary School Is Committed to Making A Difference In The Community

Austin Powell (Grade 11)
Amanda McCutcheon (Grade 11)

Hannah Merchant (Grade 11)
Ashleigh McBain (Teacher)

The Learning Clinic Radio Show, hosted by Robert Kirwan on Laurentian University's CKLU 96.7 FM included members of the Ontario Students Against Impaired Driving Group from Confederation Secondary School as special guests on the December 21, 2009 program. Ashleigh McBain, the Teacher Supervisor of the group, brought along three students to represent the close to 40 students who have signed up to participate during the inaugural year of this important extracurricular organization. All students were in Grade 11: Austin Powell, Amanda McCutcheon and Hannah Merchant. During the show they spoke about how it was the death of three young teenagers in a tragic accident in Valley East on June 21, 2009. Steven Philippe (16) and Jazmine Houle (15),  who both attended Confederation secondary school, were walking along the side of Hwy 69N in Hanmer with their friend, Caitlin Jelley (15), when all three were killed by an impaired driver. Students at the school have shown tremendous support for the activities being organized by the OSAID group as the students try to raise awareness among community members of the need for people to be more sensible when it comes to driving while being impaired in any way. They stated that while alcohol is often the root cause of accidents where impairment is a factor, cell phones, loud passengers, medication, and a long list of other things that can reduce one's ability to focus on driving.
If you are interested in downloading the radio program to your computer, just click here to get to the archives. 
Make sure that you have the date set at 2009-12-21; the start time set at 18:00; and the duration for 120 minutes. Then all you do is click on "download" and it will be saved to your computer in an mp3 format. Then you can enjoy the interview whenever you wish. NOTE: The archives will only be available until January 19, 2010.

Ashleigh McBain and several more of the students in the group were at the Hanmer Valley Shopping Centre on Saturday, December 19, 2009, creating awareness among the community of the dangers of driving while impaired from any substance. 

The group was set up in the Centre Court area of the Hanmer Valley Shopping Centre all day long singing Christmas Carols for shoppers and drawing attention with "Charger" who was a huge hit with the youngsters.

"Charger" even had a chance to visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus to give them his wish list for this year. Rumour has it that he wished for a city football championship in 2010.

A second display was set up just outside Cousin Vinny's Restaurant & Bar. The owners of Cousin Vinny's have pledged support for the group all year long in an effort to promote safe driving practices among adults in the community.

The purpose of OSAID is to make students aware of the choices they make when drinking and to make responsible decisions. The students from Confederation will be raising money all year long to send representatives to a provincial conference in Toronto on the first weekend of May 2010. There they will take part in developing leadership skills and be trained in approaching peers and the community with the issues and seriousness of impaired driving.

For more information you can go the the Confederation Secondary School web site or contact Ashleigh McBain at the school during normal business hours.

The 200 Wolf Squadron Thanks The Community of Valley East For Generosity

  The 200 Wolf Squadron of the Royal Canadian Air Cadets were at that Hanmer Valley Shopping Centre for their first tag day of the year.

On behalf of the 200 Wolf Squadron we would like to thank Val Mazzuca and Bob Kirwan for allowing us the opportunity to hold our tag day in their establishment.  We’d also like to thank all the many patrons of the Hanmer Valley Shopping Centre on Dec 11, 12 & 13th for their very generous support.  We raised in excess of $400.00 in the Hanmer Valley Shopping Centre alone.

Thank you again for your very generous support.

The Cadets even took time out to say hello Santa and Mrs. Claus.

IN THE PHOTO: Sgt Robert Bolger, Corporal Joshua Bolger, Corporal Aaron Anderson, and Corporal Austin Anderson

Danica Tremblay Dhinel Shares An Inspirational Story With Our Readers About Showing Your Loved Ones You Care

The Old Man
by Danica Tremblay Dhinel

Dear Mr. Kirwan:

   My friend recently told me a story about an elderly man who frequently comes into her store and gives every woman he sees working a single rose. The man told her the story of why it is he does this. He told her that a few years ago his wife passed away. However while she was still alive he had never bought her roses. His wife asked him many times to buy her some but he had never thought of doing it. Once she had passed on he regretted not buying her any and felt guilty. Now, every once in a while when he thinks of buying his wife roses he enters my friends store, buys a bouquet and passes them out to the women.

   When my friend told me this story I began to think deeply on my own life and all the things I should or could do for the ones I love while they are still around. Little things to show them that I care and that I’m thinking of them. Many of us go through life not thinking that these simple gestures could mean the world to someone. Not much thought has to go into them, just simple things like leaving a note to remind someone you’re thinking of them; telling those around you that you love them: paying for a stranger’s coffee when you’re ahead of them in line at the drive-thru; calling someone up to see how their day is going or maybe buying someone flowers on any given day just to show you care.
   Like this man, many of us don’t realize the things we should have done differently while our loved ones were still around. We shouldn’t wait till they are gone to realize we should have told them we loved them more often, or spent more time with them, or we should of gotten them those flowers they wanted so badly. Don’t wait till it’s too late. Tell your wife or husband or mother or father, brother or sister that you love them. Give them a hug; send them e-mails or a card, call old friends up just to see how they’ve been. Don’t let the people you care about most slip out of your life, because one day they will be gone and you will spend your life regretting.

   I have not had the pleasure of meeting this kind man but his story will remain in my heart forever. I am deeply saddened by his story but somehow it brings a new light to my heart. He realized his mistake too late and now he is trying to repay the debt he feels he owes. I believe everyone can relate and learn from such a story, and I hope some if not all will find it in themselves to slow down and start making the little things count, cause in the end, it’s what matters the most.

Danica Tremblay Dhinel

Dear Danica:

   What a beautiful story. It truly gives you hope for mankind when you know that there are people in the world like that elderly man. I am also glad to see that you are back to writing, and I do indeed remember you. You have a tremendous talent for communicating your feelings. I wish you the best of luck in your current endeavours and I definitely encourage you to write often.

Robert Kirwan

Confed’s Evolutionary Band Members Are Earning Their Education

Members of the Confederation Secondary School ’s Evolutionary Band, all consider their experience with the group to be memorable and very rewarding. They get to practice and rehearse for most of the school year to prepare for a Spring Tour of concerts and trips all over the region under the direction of Band Leader and Music Instructor, Norm McIntosh. Each year there is usually a major overnight tour that is the highlight of the season.

All of these activities cost money, and it is up to each member of the band to do their individual part to help raise the necessary funds. One of the major fund-raisers of the year is a raffle which will produce eight winners of beautiful prints by Gordon Drysdale. Students, such as Hailey Chinn, above, are responsible for using their creativity and initiative to find ways of selling tickets to the general public. Hailey is one of the students who have been seen selling tickets on the prints at the Hanmer Valley Shopping Centre recently. Hailey, who is in her second year with Evolutionary, is a member of the crew and is responsible for the sound board. “I’m not very good at performing or being in front of an audience, but I love music and wanted to be part of the band. When I got an opportunity to be part of the crew I took it and I love every minute of my experience,” Hailey explained. Besides the lead singers and instrument players, there are a lot of people needed behind the scenes to make sure that the set is properly constructed and the sound comes out just right. The nice thing about Evolutionary is that it provides so many young people with a first hand experience in the music industry so that they have a better idea of whether or not this is the kind of career they would like to pursue after high school.

If you have a chance to purchase tickets on the Gordon Drysdale prints, or if you wish to help the band out with a donation of any size, just contact Confederation Secondary School   and ask to speak to Norm McIntosh.

Local Students Get A Chance to Develop Performance Skills This Summer

   This summer, travel back to the 1960s with Lock and Keynote’s production of the original musical, Rock Around the Nation! Lock and Keynote Productions aims to encourage and facilitate the artistic growth of young people in North-eastern Ontario and rural communities. For the past three years, we have held musical theatre day camps in Cochrane , ON and Cornerbrook, NLD for children aged 8-18. Our camps are run by young working professionals who not only have a passion for the arts, but a passion for children. Each year, a new script is developed, incorporating a wide range of classic and contemporary Broadway songs. In addition to learning skills in dance, drama, and singing, we believe that by participating in theatre, children develop confidence, creativity, and learn the value of teamwork. Now entering our fourth season, we are excited to bring our philosophy to Sudbury .

The Musical Theatre Summer Intensive For Youth will be held at Arts North, at 7 Cedar Street in Sudbury from July 20 to 31 with performances on July 31 and August 1. The cost to participate is only $300 per person.

   This year’s artistic team includes musical director and founding member Shari Porter, director and playwright Vikki VanSickle, and Sudbury native Sarah Williamson as choreographer. Sarah studied dance at Diane Boulais Dance Studio de Danse in Valley East before moving to Toronto to pursue her career as a dancer. After joining the Lock and Keynote team as choreographer in 2008, Sarah decided to bring Lock and Keynote Productions to her hometown.

 This year’s show, Rock Around the Nation, is a rollicking romp set in the 1960s. The sleepy town of Happy Hills is about to get all shook up, when famous girl group The Belles decide to do a live broadcast on the popular television show Rock Around the Nation from Happy Hills city hall. Jam packed with dancing, singing, and everybody’s favourite hits from the 60s, Rock Around the Nation is sure to make you stand up and sing For more information, or to register, please visit our website at www.lockandkeynote.com or visit www.artsnorth.ca

SPECIAL RADIO INTERVIEW: The Learning Clinic, a weekly radio talk show that is hosted by Robert Kirwan on CKLU 96.7 FM, will feature several members of Lock and Keynote Productions on Monday, June 15, 2009 from 6 to 8 p.m. If you want to find out more information on the program, or if you want to listen to a discussion about Education and the Arts, then be sure to tune in for the show.

Catherine Colasimone Named Miss Valley East 2009
The Miss Valley East Beauty with a Purpose Pageant 2009 was held on Sunday January 18, 2009 at Valleyview Public School .  There were fourteen contestants. Each contestant was judged in a number of different areas, including: a personal interview with the judges, scholastic testing, public speaking, on stage performances, fashion show and formal wear. 

When all of the judging was completed, Catherine Colasimone, shown above in the photo on the left, a 17 year old student at Bishop Carter Secondary School was named Miss Valley East 2009. She will represent Valley East at the Miss North Ontario Regional Canada Pageant to be held in Sudbury April 30, May 1 and 2.

First Runner Up to Miss Valley East was Jennifer Dixon and 2nd Runner Up was Alysia Manojlovic.

The judges selection for Miss Teen Valley East 2009 was 13 year old Sara Beeson of Hanmer, shown in the photo to the right. The remainder of the contestants are shown below.


Junior Kindergarten Class Enjoys Field Trip to Neil’s Independent Grocers

Neil Lindenbach, owner of Neil’s Independent Grocers in Hanmer, has always bent over backwards to provide support to local schools in Valley East and Capreol. Individual classes are welcome to visit the grocery store during special times of the year to use the Community Room and go on group tours.

During the Halloween Season, many classes took advantage of the invitation, including Ecole Catholique Jean Paul II of Val Caron. Here we see Madam Renee Brunet helping one of her Junior Kindergarten students, four-year old Hailee Kirwan, during a pumpkin carving session in the Community Room. Madam Brunet’s class took part in a two-hour field trip to Neil’s Independent Grocers which included a tour of the facility, pumpkin carving and treats. Hailee and her classmates even got to bring the pumpkins home as souvenirs of their day at the grocery store.

Laurentian University Students Conduct Survey In Valley East

   Two new residents of Valley East who moved here from Marathon , Rene and Diane Brunelle, shown on the right in the photo, were more than happy to give up a few minutes of their time recently to help out a group of Laurentian University students with one of their projects.

   The students, from the left: Melissa Kirkey, Danielle Roy and Courtney Conaty, are all in the 2nd Year of a four-year Bachelor of Commerce Program. One of their major assignments for the year is the development of a new product that could be brought to market. In order to determine the viability of their product they are required to conduct interviews with potential customers to gather information that will be beneficial in their marketing efforts. They decided to conduct their survey at the Hanmer Valley Shopping Centre.
   The product created by the group was a “pack of greeting cards designated to a particular person and containing all the cards that would be needed for the occasions throughout the year”.

   Two other members of the group, Justin Sawicz and Michelle Goneen were present for the photo. The entire group will be appearing on The Learning Clinic, a local education radio talk show on CKLU 96.7 FM on Monday, November 17 at 6:00 p.m. to share their thoughts about the Commerce Program at Laurentian. Any secondary school student who might be interested in enrolling in this program in the future should listen to the show or pick it up on their computer off the web site at www.cklu.ca .

Young Ladies Give Up Their Saturday For A Good Cause & Community Service Hours

   Jasmine McTiernan and Lindsay Aubin, both Grade 9 students at Confederation Secondary School , spent the whole day at the Hanmer Valley shopping Centre on Saturday, March 29. However, they weren’t there to spend money – they were there to help raise money for the Canadian Cancer Society by selling daffodils to kick off Cancer Awareness Month. The time spent will also go towards their 40 hour community service requirement that is part of their Secondary School Diploma Program.

   Even though they are only in their first year of high school, the two girls have indicated that they are already beginning to think about what they will do after Grade 12. Lindsay is pretty certain that she wants to enter a career in radiology after having spent a day shadowing the head of the X-Ray Department at the Sudbury Regional Hospital . Jasmine is still undecided, but is considering a few of her options.

   Both girls attended Valley View Public School and have continued with the French Immersion program at Confederation. When asked what the biggest difference was between high school and elementary school, both girls indicated the same things. “You are more responsible for what happens to you in high school. The teachers are always watching what you do in elementary school but now we are left on our own a lot more. We have to make sure we do things ourselves without being told all the time.” They also find that there is much more social time to interact with other students in high school.
   Lindsay has already put in her 40 hours of service even though she still has three years of high school left. She has done things like helping with the Rick McDonald Park in Azilda, the flu clinic and now selling daffodils. Both Lindsay and Jasmine indicated that they have always loved volunteering their time for good causes and were glad to do their small part for the Canadian Cancer Society.

Local Girls Perform Well In The Pool During Meet In Timmins
 Sarah Tkachuk is a 15 year old swimmer who joined the Valley East Waves last season.  Sarah started in competitive swimming in Newfoundland with the GANDER LAKERS SWIM CLUB in the 2005-2006 swim season.  

Previously she had been involved in diving and was a member of a diving club, diving was not available in Gander so she joined Competitive Swimming with her brother Alex.  She attends grade 9 at Marymount Academy and is also a member for their school swim team.  After several months of training in Group 2 of the Valley East Waves, Sarah had a great meet in Timmins at the Fred Rams B Championships on February 23 + 24 with 6 personal best times, 6 gold medals and overall high point winner for the 15 and over girls age category. 

 Corinne McAnulty joined the Junior Waves program of the Valley East Waves in the 2003-2004 season, following in the footsteps of big brother Steven.  Now as a 14 year old competitor who has moved through the program from Junior Waves to Group 2, Corinne trains hard five times a week for one and one half hours at a time, she has really found her groove in sprint fly events.  Corinne who attends Grade 9 at Confederation Secondary School also competed for her high school swim team at the recent City Championships.  Corinne attended the Fred Rams B Championships on February 23+24 in Timmins . With six personal best times (what the Waves consider a perfect meet), 4 gold medals, a silver and bronze Corinne was the overall high point winner for the 13+14 girls age category. 
Laurentian University Nursing Students Conduct Vital Signs Clinic
As part of their program, students enrolled in the Laurentian University Nursing Programs are required to spend a number of hours in community and clinical settings. On February 11, 2008, seven of the students, under the supervision of Lynn Aubuchon, third from the right in the photo, conducted a Vital Signs Clinic at the Hanmer Valley Shopping Centre. 

Shown in the photo, from left to right, are: Carrie-Ann Castilloux, Marie Rose, Dominique Leroux, Renee Bertrand, Nathalie Lebeau, Lynn Aubuchon, Charlene Quesnel, and Fatima Sankoh.

The girls are all part of the 4 year French language nursing program at the school.

Canadian Model and Talent Convention Could Be The Start Of A New Lifestyle For The Collin Family
   A local family from Hanmer is one step closer to realizing their dreams. The Collin Family are shown from top to bottom in the photo, includes, Alyssa (8), Ashley (17), and Aubrey (11), They have successfully auditioned to attend the Canadian Model and Talent Convention (CMTC) in Toronto this coming May. At the CMTC, they will have the opportunity to meet OVER 50 of the World’s Top Modeling and Talent Agents, attend workshops and seminars as well as compete in several competitions.
   Ashley is 17 years old and has been in dance, acting, singing and modeling for 4 years. Her goal is a career in acting and singing. She began at Paquette School of Music as a vocal student when she was 10 years old. The family then moved to Belleville where she continued singing and acting and had a lead role in the school play, Joseph and the TechniColour Coat. Upon returning to Sudbury and buying a home in Valley East , Ashley was enrolled in Diane Boulais School of Dance where she attended for 3 years. In 2007 Ashley decided she wanted to expand her experiences and joined Gauvreau School of Performing Arts. Since being at Gauvreau she has been in the French River Trading Post commercial on MCTV, modeled wedding attire in the local Bridal Show and modeled Fashions by Deedee at the Sudbury Arts and Crafts Show at the Howard Johnson. Ashley began secondary education at Bishop Alexander Carter in Hanmer and in Grade 11 transferred to Sudbury Secondary Performing Arts School where she is currently completing Grade 12. She is a Drama Major, Vocal and Dance Minor.
   Aubrey is 11 years old and a natural born actor and comedian. He has been professionally trained for one year and his goal right now is to become an actor. Aubrey is in Grade 6 at Immaculate Conception School. He enjoys being center stage in any situation and much to the dismay to his teachers, easily engages his peers with his stories and antics. This is Aubrey's first year of formal training in the Arts and he has exceeded all expectations. He attends Gauvreau School of Performing Arts and studies Musical Theater.
   And finally there is Alyssa. She is 8 years old and has been in dance, modeling, and musical theatre for 4 years. Her dream is to sing and dance professionally. Alyssa is in grade 3 at Immaculate Conception School. She attended Diane Boulais School of Dance for 3 years where she studied tap, ballet and jazz. Alyssa and her classmates competed in the North Bay Kiwanis Festival where her group placed first for her division. This year Alyssa wanted to try modeling and enrolled in Gauvreau School of Performing Arts. She has modeled flower girl attire at the Bridal Show in Sudbury . She is also taking Ballet and Musical Theatre at Gauveau.
   In order for the family to attend the four-day CMTC, they must raise $7000 to cover the expenses.  The entire Collin Family will be set up at the Hanmer Valley Shopping Centre every Sunday in February from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. They will be available to talk about their dreams of one day becoming professionals and will be hoping for your support in helping them achieve their goals. If you would like to make a donation to the family so that they can attend the CMTC, please stop by their table at the mall. They would appreciate any and all donations.
   If you would like more information, you can contact their mother, Carrie Collin by email at thecollins26@hotmail.com or by telephone at 662-9105.

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