Tag Archives: Chronicle Herald

Community Herald: SHS HOPES TO DOUBLE DONATION FOR IWK

From human-hungry-hippos, to flash mobs, students and teachers at Sackville High School are pumping-up the energy and fundraising initiatives in the lead-up to their annual SHS Dance Marathon for the IWK.

Music students Matt Hustins Macdonald, Brandon Romans, Daniel Winters and Riley Prince-Gorman compose the theme song, Strength In Numbers, for this year’s six hour SHS Dance Marathon on Apr. 16, with inspiration from Mike Ryan of The Town Heroes. (L-R)
Music students Matt Hustins Macdonald, Brandon Romans, Daniel Winters and Riley Prince-Gorman compose the theme song, Strength In Numbers, for this year’s six hour SHS Dance Marathon on Apr. 16, with inspiration from Mike Ryan of The Town Heroes. (L-R) Hear their song below.

The countdown has begun for the big event, which will host dancers and teams from 18 schools in Halifax Regional Municipality and takes place on April 16 from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. at SHS.

“We’re challenging each student to raise $50 … and if 1,000 of our participants raise $50 we will reach our $50,000 goal for the IWK,” says Lara Fawthrop, SHS music teacher.

Dance Marathon in aid of Children’s Miracle Hospitals initiated a number of years ago, but only recently came to Canada, says Marilyn MacGibbon, vice-principal at SHS. Last year the school exceeded by more than double it’s fundraising goal, raising an excess of $20,000.

“We were one of the first schools to really embrace it … and we were the most successful school last year, so this year we’ve raised our fundraising goal to $50,000,” says MacGibbon.

Full Story Here.

Down the hall, local award-winning musician Mike Ryan from The Town Heroes kicked back with five music students to compose an original piece of music for the upcoming event. “It’s a positive song geared at getting the kids excited,” says Ryan.

The five students are excited to perform the original piece, entitled “Strength In Numbers,” and The Town Heroes will perform for about an hour during the SHS Dance Marathon.  While Grade 12 percussionist Matt Hustins Macdonald says he can’t dance, he plans to put his talent to good use. “Its good for me to use what I’m good at and be able to help out … there’s always something you can do,” says Hustins Macdonald.

Music student Daniel Winters plays piano in the school band and says he’s proud to be contributing to the marathon.

“And when I’m not playing, I’ll be dancing for the kids who can’t,” says Winters, drawing inspiration from the song lyrics.

Doherty says she is emotionally invested in the event and sparking new ways to get the students involved, such as putting teachers on skateboards and having students manoeuvre them as human-hungry-hippos. With laundry hampers in hand, students donated $120 to watch the teachers attempt to capture 1,300 plastic balls rolling throughout the school lobby.

On March 31, Grade 11 student Marley Repchull led supporters in a flash mob Morale Dance, while other students were ‘bringing home the bacon.’

Elicia Taylor, Jennah Fiske, Keegan Pettipas-Repchull and Marley Repchull are ‘bringing home the bacon’ along with fellow Sackville High School students, fundraising for SHS Dance Marathon on Apr. 16, where 18 schools in HRM will dance for six hours in aid of IWK hospital. (L-R)
Elicia Taylor, Jennah Fiske, Keegan Pettipas-Repchull and Marley Repchull are ‘bringing home the bacon’ along with fellow Sackville High School students, fundraising for SHS Dance Marathon on Apr. 16, where 18 schools in HRM will dance for six hours in aid of IWK hospital. (L-R)

“It’s a play on a piggybank,” says Doherty.

“Our co-president Sam Butler brought in $100 in nickels,” says Grade 11 student Elicia Taylor. “Whoever has the heaviest donation gets to donate the sum of the donations in their own name (to help reach their individual fundraising goal),”says Taylor.

A wise strategist, Butler changed her $100 in fundraising to heavy, five cent nickels, weighing-in at 50 lbs. and registering an error on the scale.

“The Morale Dance takes place (during the dance marathon) at the top of every hour to announce the next miracle kid, so it’s our pump-up song,” says Doherty. “We’ve got five kids coming from the IWK and at the top of every hour they take the stage and they tell their story. Our kids take a knee (kneel on one knee) and listen to the children’s stories.”

“Overall, the event shows the kids that there are people who have overcome greater challenges than they could ever imagine happening in their own lives,” says MacGibbon.

“We want to help the IWK continue to do the amazing work they do,” smiles Doherty.

Donations to support the event can be made through the school or at SHS Dance Marathon on www.helpmakemiracles.ca. For Dancer and Team Registration visit the school’s website.

Bedford-Sackville Observer: The power of sunflower

Beneath their “labour of love,” a 25 foot off-grid solar sunflower at Farmer’s Best along Bedford Highway, Sunflower Solar partners Keith Crews, Steven Weagle and Kirsten Weagle want Nova Scotians to know solar power has never been more accessible. (Cyndi Sweeney)
Beneath their “labour of love,” a 25 foot off-grid solar sunflower at Farmer’s Best along Bedford Highway, Sunflower Solar partners Keith Crews, Steven Weagle and Kirsten Weagle want Nova Scotians to know solar power has never been more accessible. (Cyndi Sweeney)

 “With our heat pump, we went down about 35 per cent on our power bill by just changing the water heater,” says Steven Weagle, president of Sunflower Solar.

Spring is not quite here, but meander around a bend on the Bedford Highway and a 25-foot sunflower is in full bloom at Farmer’s Best market. The off-grid solar beacon of sunshine was recently installed by Sunflower Solar and together the two businesses are cooperatively marketing solar energy to Nova Scotians.

“Solar has never been more affordable than it is now … we’re a little bit behind in Canada, but we’re catching up,” says Kirsten Weagle, one of four partners at Sunflower Solar Inc.

“Solar is totally modular so just about anything is possible from a homeowner or even a commercial business perspective,” says Weagle.

Originally from Lower Sackville, Weagle says he loves technology and being hands-on with innovating solar power. He says the sunflower project took about a year and a half and is a labour of love and a progression from engineering solar-powered hot dog vending carts in Ontario and Nova Scotia.

Read how solar power can reduce your household energy bills here.

For more info on solar energy visit www.sunflowersolar.ca and for solar energy solutions and rebates information visit www.efficiencyns.ca/energy-solutions/solar.

Halifax Citizen: Sweets from Santa’s helpers

newleafFor a small kitchen, the crew of 20 bakers at New Leaf Enterprises are mixing up thousands of shortbread, rocky road and Santa’s whiskers cookies.

“We’re like little elves pounding out all this baking,” says Veronica Dale, Executive Director. As of Dec. 1st, Dale says they’ve produced 4,785 shortbreads and more than 2,000 cherry balls. Their popular chocolate covered peanut butter balls have rolled across the 4,000 mark.

But orders close on Fri. Dec. 12 and Easter Seals Nova Scotia president and CEO Henk van Leeuwen says order soon and invest in a good cause. “We do rely on sales from our social enterprises to be invested back into Easter Seals Nova Scotia … like our barrier-free camp and our wheelchair provision programs … but the food is excellent,” says van Leeuwen.

Jolly bakers at New Leaf Enterprises whipping and mixing a nostalgic array of holiday baking like hermit cookies, Santa’s whiskers and shortbreads. Nicole Lenson, Sonya Demone (front row) with Michelle Wilson, Christine Riley and Joe Hickling (back row).
Jolly bakers at New Leaf Enterprises whipping and mixing a nostalgic array of holiday baking like hermit cookies, Santa’s whiskers and shortbreads. Nicole Lenson, Sonya Demone (front row) with Michelle Wilson, Christine Riley and Joe Hickling (back row).

“They’re all made by hand, from scratch,” says Dale. “In our world, we use baking as a teaching tool.” And this time of year, Easter Seals Nova Scotia whips holiday nostalgia into their menu selection, offering a variety of baking representing what Christmas means to them. The hermit cookies are new to the menu this year and Dale says the recipe was her great grandmas.

“Our crew has a wide range of ability; some have physical disabilities; some have intellectual disabilities; and some would say they have both,” says van Leeuwen. The holiday campaign is in its 10th year and like all programs run through New Leaf, van Leeuwen says they are designed with skills training and inclusion in mind. “Our kitchen is the best kept culinary secret in Halifax,” he laughs while references the extra few pounds he’s added from sampling the goods. “We do high production and high volume and they freeze well.”

“We have people who put their order in with us and then they come back because they ate it!,” laughs Dale.

Christine Riley (24) has been with New Leaf Enterprises for two years and says she loves learning about baking. “Last week we went to NSCC Akerley Campus bakery and learned a lot visiting all the kitchens,” says Riley. She says they were taught how to work with chocolate and the varying temperatures. “My favorite item to make is the chocolate covered peanut butter balls … They’re sort of hard to make because we have to make sure the temperature of the chocolate we’re dipping them in is the same as the peanut butter,” she says.

“If you let them set too long, it’ll be too hard and goopy,” says Sonya Demone.

Last year the program raised $6,500 from Christmas baking. This year, they say they hope to raise more. Van Leeuwen says the Christmas baking engages their clients in a seasonal aspect of what’s happening in their community. “They acquire skills such as personal and professional development, reading and following a recipe, teamwork, friendship and skills around production including baking, wrapping and everyday kitchen operations,” he says.

“It’s a crazy, rushed time of year … You’ve a work party or a cookie exchange, let us do it for you,” says van Leeuwen.

The catering kitchen operates all year, but limited orders for holiday baking are extended until Fri. Dec. 12 for pick-up on Wed. Dec. 17.

Items cost $4.95 per dozen or loaf and can be collected at Easter Seals Nova Scotia, 3670 Kempt Rd. To order call 902-453-6000 or email i.grundt@easterseals.ns.ca. Here’s the baking form: www.easterseals.ns.ca

Also online in the Halifax Citizen.

Indulge yourself with New Leaf homebaking: Santa`s whiskers, shortbread, chocolate covered peanut butter balls, cherry balls and rocky roads.
Indulge yourself with New Leaf homebaking: Santa`s whiskers, shortbread, chocolate covered peanut butter balls, cherry balls and rocky roads.

The holiday menu at New Leaf Enterprises:

  • Shortbread
  • Cherry Balls
  • Peanut Butter Balls
  • Hermit Cookies
  • Santa’s Whiskers Cookies
  • Rocky Road Squares
  • Chocolate Marble Coffee Cake
  • Cranberry Orange Loaf

Community Herald: Baseball without borders

 

Ambassadors for baseball in Nova Scotia, children from Fall River, Sackville, Hammonds Plains and Halifax are excited for the 2015 Canada - Cuba Goodwill Tour in Feb. Rachel Crawford, Emily MacFadyen, Lauren Sweet, Grace Hartling, Emilie Leger and Erin Cowan (Back Row L-R). Camden Rendell, Kyle Hunt, Ryan Trenholm and Emily Cahill (Front Row L-R)  Photo: Cyndi Sweeney
Ambassadors for baseball in Nova Scotia, children from Fall River, Sackville, Hammonds Plains and Halifax are excited for the 2015 Canada – Cuba Goodwill Tour in Feb. Rachel Crawford, Emily MacFadyen, Lauren Sweet, Grace Hartling, Emilie Leger and Erin Cowan (Back Row L-R). Camden Rendell, Kyle Hunt, Ryan Trenholm and Emily Cahill (Front Row L-R) Photo: Cyndi Sweeney

Local baseball players are returning to Cuba for the 2015 Canada – Cuba Goodwill Tour in February, but this year, girls will join the boys as ambassadors of the Nova Scotia baseball community.

“It’s about encouraging other kids down there, girls in particular, that baseball’s a great sport and there’s great opportunities with it,” says Mike Crawford, head coach of Hammonds Plains 11U “A” team.

But it’s not all about baseball. More than 200 players travelling to Cuba throughout the month of Feb. will have the opportunity to visit the local school in Matanzas, play baseball with local children and deliver school and baseball supplies.

“We’ll probably be contributing more than $60,000 worth of gear to Matanzas baseball program this year with all the teams that are going,” says Dennis Woodworth, the program development team lead.

Only 40 mins. from the resort village of Varadero, Woodworth says Matanzas is a huge baseball community and provides a safe environment for the players.

“Every team goes for a week and they play four-to-five games. We do a school visit every week and our goal is to donate between $4,000 and $5,000 in school supplies,” says Woodworth, who’s been coaching ball since 1987.

Woodworth coordinates the trips from beginning to end and says the idea was sparked in Varadero three years ago when he was given an opportunity to play ball with other baseball enthusiasts, but wanted to take it a step further.

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Herald Communities: Helping furry friends through carpentry

Helping furry friends HeraldWhether it’s a dog house for the SPCA or cat shelters for feral felines, high school students in HRM are busy creating something good for the community, and learning valuable skills along the way…

Helping furry friends through carpentry

The Community Herald: Awareness of intellectual disabilities: key to avoiding mishaps in retail store

Amber Ramey holds a lip gloss, like one she was accused of stealing from a seasonal retailer in HRM.
Amber Ramey holds a lip gloss, like the one she was accused of stealing from a seasonal retailer in HRM.

In today’s Chronicle Herald: Sharing understanding.

Awareness of intellectual disabilities is key to avoiding mishaps in retail store.