First Cortes Community Meal sets stage for more weekly meals in 2024

First Cortes Community Meal sets stage for more weekly meals in 2024

Cortes Island’s first community meal took place at Mansons Hall on Dec. 7, an event which hopefully will be the first of many in the coming year. Ester Strijbos, coordinator of Better at Home for Cortes, says the meal is not just about food. The community meals are envisioned as all ages events that bring people together, she told CKTZ. “We know that food in a social setting is a super big component of building connections.” She said that they’re hoping to host a meal on a weekly basis and rotate thru the three community centres, Mansons Hall, the Gorge and Klahoose. The community meal program, funded through the Better at Home Food Security Initiative, takes inspiration from the weekly community meal on neighbouring Quadra Island. “They have this on Quadra Island, a weekly community meal, and it’s very popular there,” stated Strijbos. A second community meal will take place at Mansons Hall  on Thursday, Dec. 14 at noon. Listen to the story...
Forest trust has ‘best year ever’ on Giving Tuesday with $20K fundraised

Forest trust has ‘best year ever’ on Giving Tuesday with $20K fundraised

The Forest Trust for the Children of Cortes Island Society (FTCCIS) had its “best year ever” on Giving Tuesday last week, according to chair Chris Dragseth, with $20,000 fundraised. FTCCIS was formed to “purchase Island Timberland forest land holdings immediately adjacent to Carrington Bay Park on Cortes Island,” and that those lands will be “held in trust for all the children of Cortes Island, in perpetuity,” according to its website. The organization adds that the lands will offer “educational, recreational, cultural and spiritual value for all our children.” CKTZ spoke to Dragseth about the $20,000 raised and what they hope to do with the funds. “We are really quite hopeful that this ends up being a year that we can close some kind of a deal with Mosaic,” stated Dragseth. Dragseth stated that “the whole acquisition of the properties is going to require legal work - surveys, covenant creation…legalise type documents and work, and so we have the need for that to be supported and that’s predominately where this year’s funds are going to go towards.” On Cortes’ Tideline website, https://www.cortesisland.com/cgi-bin/tideline/show_home.cgi Dragseth described the funds as providing “the necessary resources to complete the final groundwork in support of negotiations on purchase.” Dragseth talked about setting the fundraising target at $20,000 after a very generous donor came forward with the offer to match $10,000 of donations. They raised the initial $10,000 through the help of a fundraising email drive organized by Maureen Williams, coordinator of the fundraiser, and FTCCIS managed to meet the $20,000 goal on Giving Tuesday, Nov. 28.   For more information regarding the Forest Trust, visit the...
Local musicians reconnect with the community, set to perform over holidays

Local musicians reconnect with the community, set to perform over holidays

Professional musicians Brenda and DJ Hanson are reconnecting with their traditional territories and the communities within: the siblings and members of the Klahoose First Nation will be performing publicly for the Cortes community on Dec. 22 for a solstice event. DJ shared how projects like Lovefest, Songwriters Circle and an upcoming private holiday series have been important to their reconnection with Indigenous and non-Indigenous community members and places. “I don’t really think that there’s anything more, offering and giving as when we share our hearts and minds together for an opportunity to play somewhere like the Lovefest.” It’s such a wonderful, subjective environment to be able to perform and share,” DJ continued.  In addition to the community music connections this past summer, the duo are looking ahead to four private holiday gatherings with the Klahoose First Nation. The traditional territory and the actual residences of the Nation’s members reaches in all directions from Cortes Island, so holiday gatherings are also being hosted in Powell River, Campbell River and Auburn, Washington, to reach as many members as possible. DJ expresses his gratitude for the opportunity to connect. “We’re really exercising all of my relations because everyone’s kind of lives at large, so we’re looking at having that foremost opportunity to be able to share; share a meal, share our gifts, and sing some songs.” Brenda added that it is a “special time” to meet different members of the community. “Some of these relations of ours, that Dwayne speaks of, we haven’t even met. We don’t even know one another, we don’t know who each other are. So this is a...
Cortes Island Museum organizes first ‘Vintage Christmas’

Cortes Island Museum organizes first ‘Vintage Christmas’

The Cortes Island Museum and Archives is hosting a new type of gathering this holiday season. As locals can have few places to connect during the winter months, the museum hopes to create more opportunities within its walls, including a “Vintage Christmas,” the first holiday event the museum has ever hosted. Melanie Boyle, museum director, explained the motivation for the new gathering. “It’s just really a celebration of the season, an opportunity for people to come out and be cozy. “ The Vintage Christmas is an open house that decorates part of the current exhibit, Gilean’s [Douglas] Cabin, into a Vintage holiday theme.  “So we have a collection of her kind of letters, which is an encapsulation of the year back, way back when, like the 1950s, 60s,” Boyle says, describing the setting. “And we also have a lovely selection of vintage Christmas cards, actually postcards from the Edwardian era.” The gathering is on Saturday, Dec. 9 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The timing coincides with the Mansons Holiday Fair. The Museum continues to stay open from noon to 4 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays through the winter.  To hear more about the festive scene at the Museum this season, listen to the CKTZ News Update...
SRD considers housing, business impacts of new provincial legislation

SRD considers housing, business impacts of new provincial legislation

Strathcona Regional District (SRD) regional directors recently had a chance to explore the impacts of new housing rules that will take effect throughout the province in May 2024. The new rules intend to limit short-term rentals on residential properties, require AirBnb operators to register as a business, and increase the density of single-family residential zoning lots. The SRD held their monthly meetings on Nov. 8, discussing some of the new pieces of provincial legislation announced on Oct. 20 and Nov. 2. Regional Director for Cortes Island (Area B) Mark Vonesch commented at the general meeting that he “welcomed” the new rules.  “I welcome this legislation,” he said. “I think it’s a good solid move by the province to just think about housing as homes rather than investments, especially in small communities like our own.” Robyn Mawhinney, Regional Director for Quadra Island (Area C), had several questions on the interpretation of the current rules during the regional area’s committee meeting the same day. “The report, which said that short term rental use is essentially illegal on Quadra Island, and that all of them should be on a commercially zoned land. And it seems to me that a short term rental use, which is incidental to the residential use lands within the description of the home based business definition.” “I think it seems strange to me that you would consider that a commercial use rather than an incidental to the residential character of the building, which is containing the home occupation, which is in the definition of home occupations,” Mawhinney continued. “… So I’m concerned that staff is choosing to consider...