Citizens for a Livable Cranbrook Society provides grassroots leadership and an inclusive process, with a voice for all community members, to ensure that our community grows and develops in a way that incorporates an environmental ethic, offers a range of housing and transportation choices, encourages a vibrant and cultural life and supports sustainable, meaningful employment and business opportunities.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Trash to cash: Quebec town aims to turn food waste into gas and profits. CTV News

A Quebec town known for producing food is now working to convert organic food waste into natural gas on a large scale.
Ste-Hyacinthe, Que., located about 60 kilometres northeast of Montreal, has set a goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 15,000 tonnes a year through its conversion of waste to gas.
In order to produce the gas, organic waste from local cheese and yogurt factories is collected, and the gas is extracted from the waste. The biogas is used to fuel up a fleet of city cars and heat city buildings, while the leftover organic waste is composted and used to beautify the city's parks and gardens.

Read more and watch the video :

Dried Gourmet Mushrooms, Tiny Tim Trees, Beeswax and Baking

All contributed to a terrific Christmas Market in Cranbrook on the weekend of November, 28, 29 and 30th. Well done and Thank You vendors, Erna, Dion, Clarence and door openers!

Saturday, November 29, 2014

And the show must go on

....and it did.  Congratulations to all those who stood and participated in the pouring rain last evening.  Everyone, indeed, loves a parade because there were no less people on Baker St this year than any other and the snow dance was over the top.. 

Friday, November 28, 2014

The Economist, the Homeless and Medicine Hat

HANDING a homeless alcoholic the keys to a free furnished flat may seem foolish, unfair or both. That was certainly what Ted Clugston, the mayor of Medicine Hat, a Canadian town of 61,000, used to think—but experience has changed his mind. No-strings housing offers have helped bring the town within sight of a goal it set itself five years ago: to end homelessness by 2015. At the time over 1,000 people passed through its homeless shelters each year, many between spells on the street. If the municipality succeeds, it will be the first in North America to do so.
In 1992 Sam Tsemberis, a professor of psychiatry at New York University, started a programme that turned that sequence on its head. Pathways to Housing gave rough sleepers furnished flats in poor districts. Medical care, treatment for addiction and help in learning to cook, pay bills and so on were offered, but not required. After five years 88% remained housed.

What's Happening...

Friday November 28th, 29th AND 30th

Cranbrook Winter Farmer's Market
Fri 5:00pm - 9:00pm
Sat and Sun 10:00am - 3:00pm
1114 Baker St.

Friday November 28th

Santa Parade
Baker St. 7:00pm
Downtown Cranbrook

Saturday November 29th

Social Dance
Senior's Hall

Saturday November 29th 7:30pm and Sunday November 30 2:30pm
Sun Valley Song presents
A 'Rutterly Christmas'
beautiful Christmas music at Knox Presybyterian Church
$10 and $5 (under 12)

Get your tickets now for
A Celtic Christmas with
the Symphony of the Kootenays
Dec 6th featuring Ker Lyn Zwicker, harpist

A Few Words from Mayor Stetski

Congratulations to Lee Pratt, Tom Shypitka, Ron Popoff, Isaac Hockley, Danielle Cardoza, Norma Blissett and Wes Graham on being elected.  It will be challenging to live up to your election promises but I do wish you all the best!

Thank you to James Elliott, Bob Faiers, Anna Hudson, Brian Kostiuk, Alan MacBean, Brad Scriver, Lynn McIntosh and John York for running – democracy is best served by having choices, and it was great to see your sincere interest in Cranbrook and its future.

A special thank you to Councillors Sharon Cross, Bob Whetham, Angus Davis, Diana J. Scott and Gerry Warner for your support – you are much appreciated!  Collectively, including Councillor Pallesen, I believe the seven of us represented the diverse interests of our citizens well.

I want to leave the new Mayor and Councillors with a couple of challenges.

You all had a group of people helping you to get elected.  After you are sworn in on December 8 you owe them a big Thank You, but that’s all.  Once you are in the seats as Municipal Leaders you are Public Servants and your loyalty is to all of the people of Cranbrook.  You need to move our community forward for Youth and Seniors, for Arts and Culture, for Recreation and the Environment, by helping to recruit family doctors and to reduce poverty, and yes, of course, by building the economy and fixing infrastructure, including potholes. Every decision needs to be made in the context of “Is this in the best interest of our citizens and our city?”  That can be challenging but in reality that is what you signed on for and what the people of Cranbrook expect from you.

I want to issue a special challenge to incoming Mayor Lee Pratt.  Over the last three years the Mayor’s office has become a place where every citizen has a voice and every concern is listened to.  My focus has been on accessibility, transparency and respectfulness and ensuring everyone contacting my office knows that they are valued members of our community whether they are happy with the City or not.  I encourage you to keep your door open and to follow that same approach, including holding Saturday Coffee With the Mayor sessions and monthly Brown Bag Meetings.

A special thanks to the 2192 voters who share in my vision of what Cranbrook can be, and thanks to all of the people of Cranbrook for three great years.  It is you who made the job so enjoyable and it has been an honour to work for you and with you. Together we have made Cranbrook a great place to call Home!

Now, about those potholes which I understand are soon to disappear from all over town….!!

Mayor Wayne Stetski

Cranbrook BC

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Garden in First Snow

Gardeners frequently debate whether to cut down their perennials in the fall or leave them until spring.  I always leave mine until the spring and these photos demonstrate one of the reasons why.  Not only do the stems hold the snow aloft to prevent compaction over the roots but the seed heads add winter interest to the garden, provide seeds for the birds and look fabulous after a fresh fall of snow. 

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Letter of Appreciation from Kokushikan University, Japan

The International Students Program at the College of the Rockies is recognized as the best anywhere. Having these students come to Cranbrook enriches our lives and our economy.

Toronto to narrow traffic lanes

When intersections were narrowed in downtown Cranbrook, many did not feel it was a good idea but the concept was planned to slow down traffic and indeed it works.  It would appear big cities know this too.

Several of the city's traffic lanes will soon be narrowed in an attempt to increase safety by slowing down drivers.
Wide lanes make drivers feel comfortable speeding, because they have a large cushion around their vehicles. Reducing lane width would make drivers automatically slow down, as they have less room to move to either side, a city official told CTV Toronto.
The lanes will be narrowed by adding bike lanes or widening sidewalks, so lanes are between 3 and 4.3 metres wide.

Read more:

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Ten Reasons to Visit a Museum

According to Know Your Own Bone,  museums make you feel good and make you smarter.

It's that time.... deck the halls at the Cranbrook Museum

Saturday November 22nd saw volunteers involved with the Cranbrook Museum of Rail Travel come together to raise the tree.

There were staff, board members, archive volunteers and several spectators demonstrating how a museum brings together many different aspects of a community. Museums of art, history and culture reflect who we are, where we have come from and what our talents are, all of which may, hopefully, guide us into our future.

Cranbrook can be proud of our several facilities,which not only educate our residents but act as attractions, employers, community builders and are sources of enjoyment for many.

Friday, November 21, 2014

November Bird Life

There was carnage in my garden this week as I watched a small robin-sized, buff and brown bird suddenly descend and proceed to have, what I thought was bath in the snow.  The frantic jumping around resembled a chilly bath but then the bird lifted off carrying a mouse almost as big as itself.  Of course the camera was nowhere near and neither were the binoculars.  I've seen large birds of prey carry off fish and small mammals but never such a small bird like this, so after a little research I determined this predator was likely a shrike.  I believe this is not a common bird in this area so I would love to be enlightened by anyone who could let me know if this little predator could have been any other bird. 
Thanks to those who advised this bird could likely have been either a Northern Shrike or a Pygmy owl.

Stewart has photographed a collection of birds in the area over the last couple of weeks.

Snow Bunting above Elizabeth Lake

Bald Eagle in a snow storm

late leaving geese


Thursday, November 20, 2014

Britain's First Poo Bus

What's Happening.....

Thursday November 20th 

Back Country Avalanche Workshop
Lecture Theatre
College of the Rockies

Barra MacNeils
7:30 pm Key City Theatre
Tickets $35 and $30 for members

Saturday November 22nd

Moyie Craft and Bake Sale
Community Hall
1:00pm - 3:30pm

Cranbrook Knox Presbyterian Tea and Bake Sale
2:00pm - 4:00pm

Locals Coffee House
Tickets $8
Lotus Books

A 'People-Centred' New Mayor for Victoria

From the Tyee:
For the full article:

Victoria mayor-elect Lisa Helps says many people have a hard time nailing down her politics. "For my whole life, I've been really hard to slap a label on," Helps said. "I guess that's what confuses people."

On Saturday, Helps defeated Dean Fortin, Victoria's two-term mayor, winning by just 89 votes. In an interview with The Tyee, Helps described her goals, priorities and governing style.

She said divisive politics that pit business against community interests, for example, are unhelpful in a small city like Victoria where "our small business culture here, it's inherently community based," she said.
"I don't see it as us versus them," she said. "I see it all as us, and that's my politics."

Sterk compared Helps' win in Victoria to similar political shifts in cities such as Winnipeg, which elected its first aboriginal mayor last month, and Calgary, where Naheed Nenshi was elected in 2010. In all three cities voters supported mayors who think and act differently, she said.
"There's a generational change happening across the country," Sterk said. "It's not just here."

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Blast from the Past

A little reminder of why we all live here - from June 14 1951.
This Courier Editorial was reprinted in 15 other newspapers from Ontario to Vancouver.

 click to enlarge

Monday, November 17, 2014

Art Exhibit Reception for Jeanette Lavoie

Jeanette Lavoie with two of her paintings
A reception was held on Saturday November 15th for Jeanette Lavoie's first solo exhibit at the Cranbrook Arts Council Gallery at 135, Tenth Avenue South.

The exhibit is on display until the end of November.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

All Change on the Merry Go Round of Cranbrook City Politics, Results 2014

Congratulations to all who ran in this lively election.  Good Luck to those who will take their seats soon.  
2014 General Local Elections & Fluoride Electoral Assent ‘Preliminary’ Results

Below are the preliminary results of the City of Cranbrook General Local Election of Saturday November 15, 2014.  The declaration of the 'official' election results must be done by the Chief Elections Officer by 4:00pm MT on Wednesday November 19, 2014.

Office of Councillor (6 positions)




CARDOZO, Danielle



CROSS, Sharon

SCOTT, Diana J.









Office of Mayor (1 position)


YORK, John


Water Fluoridation Assent Vote

"Are you in favour of Council adopting City of Cranbrook Cease Fluoridation Bylaw No. 3799, 2014, which authorizes stopping the addition of fluoride to the municipal water supply effective January 1, 2015?"



Office of School Trustee (5 positions)

WHALEN, Patricia

JOHNS, Chris




ELLIS, Chris

Friday, November 14, 2014

Blast from the Past, 'You and Your Municipal Government'

Click to enlarge 

What's Happening.....

Friday November 14th

Key City Theatre

Laurie School
8:00am - 8:00pm

November 14th and 15th
Bootleg Gap Craft Fair
4:00 - 8:00pm
10:00am - 5:00pm

Minkha Sweater Sale
Anglican Church Hall
46, 13th Ave.
10:00am - 4:00pm

Acrylics, Gels, Mediums and Pastes Workshop
Cranbrook and District Arts Council
10:00am - 3:00pm

The Jeanette Lavoie Exhibit
Cranbrook and District Arts Council Gallery
Exhibit runs November 15th - 28th

Response to Mr Faiers and Ms Cardozo

Letter from Jenny Humphrey,

In the interest of speed of reply, I am posting this here today to thank you both for responding to my questions (letter posted in this blog, on Eknow and in the Townsman) in your letters to eKnow and the Townsman.  I am now much clearer about your thinking and I appreciate that.

I enjoyed talking to you Mr Faiers and other candidates who attended our Arts Council Informational evening.

Thank you to all the candidates for putting their names forward for what is a taxing (couldn't resist), time consuming, and frequently thankless job.

Jenny Humphrey

Michael's Musings

  "Culture of collaboration" needed in Cranbrook

By Michael J Morris
 Buddy Dyer, the visionary mayor of Orlando, Florida, is "literally changing the face " of the city best known as a major tourist destination.
  Mayor Dyer, first elected in 2003,  in an interview with Orlando magazine  said “It’s about being able to create a vision and bring a lot of people into it, then move forward."
 The mayor has been real big on creating a "culture of collaboration" bringing together all levels of government, business people, educational institutions, the medical profession, and philanthropists, and of course the citizens of Orlando who have re-elected him.
The Dr Phillips Centre for the Performing Arts was opened on November 6, as one example, but he has also championed a sports and entertainment complex, the Medical City and Creative Village -- and other major projects.
 The Creative Village possibilities have intrigued me for some time, and at this point, in the interests of full disclosure, I visit Orlando regularly, and write for three blogs, owned by an Orlando based business.
 The article notes that "Thinking outside the box with proposals like ... Creative Village, the high-tech business-residential mecca that would be a metropolis in itself, goes along with Dyer’s vision of having the kind of city that will draw a creative class—'talented young entrepreneurs who are going to come up with the next innovation in emerging media or medical science or things of that nature.''
 As Cranbrook voters go to the polls to elect a mayor and council, it seems to me they are faced with candidates who would turn back the block to the old ways of running Cranbrook. That's not an option folks given the overall decline in relatively rural communities across Canada.
 Another option is to simply muddle along basically with same old, same old attitudes that are similar in nature to turning back the clock.
 There is a third option. Continue to define and implement a new vision for Cranbrook which has been started by the present mayor, Wayne Stetski, and council over the past few years.
 Yes, there will be roadblocks but if Mayor Dyer can do it with all the challenges an American city faces, surely Cranbrook is up to the task before it.
 Just imagine, if we were able to attract those "talented young entrepreneurs" who will take Cranbrook to the next level as a better place to live, work and play. Mayor Dyer is moving Orlando from the city which has made it famous, and adding to the mix for the 21st Century.
 Here in Cranbrook, my vote goes to those candidates who believe in a "culture of collaboration" who will move us forward in all aspects of community life, not divide us, with rhetoric and an approach to municipal government from a bygone age that some still like.
 Let's heed Mayor Dyer's advice that we continue with the vision, bring the entire community into it and move forward. My email is

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Councillor Warner responds to Alex Jensen and his letter to the Townsman

Regarding letter from Alex Jensen in Townsman, Monday November 10th 

Ah, Alex. Norma Blissett hasn’t been elected a councillor yet as your Nov. 10 letter alleges, but I’m sure she would make a fine councillor and thanks for doing your best to promote her. As for me, a self-proclaimed independent running for re-election, I’ve never belonged to a political party which is why I call myself an “independent.” Mind you, I’ve volunteered for political parties, the last one being the Reform Party that gave birth to the federal conservatives, about as far from “tax and spend” as you can get. As for the slate bogeyman, the closest thing I’ve seen to a municipal slate in Cranbrook was the last election when four former Cranbrook Chamber of Commerce presidents ran and lost. This year, the chamber wisely decided to live up to its non-partisan mandate and declined to get directly involved in the election. I commend them for that which is more than I can say Alex for your attempts to sling mud in the current campaign.
Ciao . . .

Councillor Gerry Warner


Time to set the record straight on an underhanded attempt to smear four of the candidates running for Mayor and Council.  Speaking only for myself, I was not interviewed by anyone from CUPE during this campaign nor have I knowingly spoke to any CUPE member though I certainly wouldn’t hesitate to do so the same as I’d speak to any Cranbrook citizen. I did fill out a CUPE questionnaire that I received in the mail and my good wife Sandra dropped it off at the CUPE office. That’s the total extent of my CUPE involvement and I certainly don’t apologize for it as I filled out a questionnaire from the Cranbrook Chamber of Commerce too. That’s what candidates do in elections. So what’s going on here? Alex Jensen, who made the original slate allegation in the Cranbrook Townsman, ran in the 2002 civic election as an unabashed member of a slate along with lawyers Ron Miles and John Zimmer and local businessman Percy Davis. Except they weren’t honest enough to call it a slate.  They called it a “team” and at an all candidates meeting Nov. 14, 2002 Miles defended the team approach saying the team was just a group of friends and “friendship helps the decision-making process.”
No kidding! And how did the team fare in the 2002 election? Miles came in third out of three in the mayoralty contest and Jensen finished 10th out of 13 running for Council.
The people of Cranbrook saw very clearly through that “team” and I believe they will see  just as clear-eyed through Jensen’s baseless allegation in the current campaign.

Councillor Gerry Warner

Nov. 13, 2014