Returning Home From Africa

Returning Home From Africa

This program was funded by a grant from the Community Radio Fund of Canada and the Government of Canada’s Local Journalism Initiative. “The Kingdom of Uganda is a fairy tale. The scenery is different, the climate is different and most of all, the people are different from anything elsewhere to be seen in the whole range of Africa … what message I bring back … concentrate on Uganda.” – Winston Churchill, My Africa Journey,  A group of 23 Cortes residents just returned from Uganda and neighbouring Kenya. They decided to travel this year because the tour company owned by Chris Hartwick’s parents, is going out of business. Nobody anticipated there would be any complications returning home from Africa. Cortes Currents: Roy L Hales interviews Jenny Hartwick & Bruce Ellingsen: Returning home from Africa Courtesy Google Maps Kenya’s Borders Closed They were in Africa when the first cases of COVID 19 were reported. Chris and Jenny Hartwick came two weeks early, so they could do some exploring on their own, but the entire group was in Kenya by March 10. On March 13th, a 27-year-old Kenyan woman returning home from the United States tested positive. The virus reached neighbouring Uganda by March 22. Some of the Cortes Island contingent visited both countries. When Jenny Hartwick finally flew out of Kenya, there were 25 confirmed cases in that nation. She described the difficulties leaving, “It was several days of waking up to emails from KLM Royal Dutch Airlines saying that our flights had been cancelled. This was still while we were in Kenya. It was multiple re-booking days. Part of our group left on Tuesday, March 24, and the morning of the...
Virtual Town Hall Meeting

Virtual Town Hall Meeting

Article Originally Published on Cortes Currents; Audio belongs to CKTZ More people participated. At its peak, seventy listeners connected to the conference by computer or phone and an unknown number listened to the radio broadcast. Yet Cortes Island’s first virtual town hall meeting was essentially a continuation of the recent online conferences Regional Director Noba Anderson has been having with local businesses and organizations.  Unedited Audio from Tuesday March 31, 2020 Cortes Town Hall Meeting Was The Meeting ‘Legitimate’? Some, like a recent poster to the Tideline, question the legitimacy of such assemblies, “ This is not an official body and it is not authorized to speak on behalf of the community …” They are missing the point. Director Anderson is attempting to mobilize the community and is asking for our input. These online conferences are not an expression of the proposed ‘Cortes Assembly Experiment.’ They are a response to the COVID-19 crises and, given Anderson’s involvement, unlike any of the local government models we studied. The businesses, organizations and individuals that speak at these meetings represent themselves. Everyone on Cortes Island was invited to the virtual town hall meeting, even the people who oppose it. Director Anderson was not required to listen, but chose to do so, and these online assemblies possess no authority beyond what she chooses to give them.  What this will mean for the future of Cortes Island remains to be seen. Clarification Re Off-Island Trips  Half of the meeting seemed to consist of bringing the influx of new participants up to speed. Most of this came through the reports from various sectors of the community, however Director Anderson made a clarification:  “The second meeting...
Cortes Island Christmas Bird Count

Cortes Island Christmas Bird Count

This program was funded by a grant from the Community Radio Fund of Canada and the Government of Canada’s Local Journalism Initiative.  When you talk about Cortes Island’s population, most of us think of humans but there is an even larger avian population. The Cortes museum has been taking an annual Christmas Bird Count since 2001. There were 38 participants this year. Most were in five groups, but there were also a number of people who reported birds visiting feeders, or parts of the island not on the established routes.  2018 Bird Count – Courtesy Cortes Island Museum And Archives Cortes Currents: Roy L Hales interviewing Laurel Bohart Last December’s Bird Count They counted 3,149 birds from 65 species, which is about average. When I inquired about interviewing someone, the museum suggested I contact Laurel Bohart, who led the team in Squirrel Cove. “The reason we do a winter bird count is these are residents, and this gives us a better understanding and idea of the resident bird populations. What we did see, and I didn’t see it, but it was seen near Mansons Lagoon and Hollyhock: was Greater Yellowlegs. This is a shorebird, related to gulls … and they’re very rare. They shouldn’t even be here,” she said.  2018 Bird Count – Courtesy Cortes Island Museum And Archives Human Impacts On Bird Population One of the most intriguing aspects of Laurel Bohart’s analysis of the changing populations is the degree to which non-climate change related human activities are believed to be the cause:  The Canada Goose population is in decline because of the egg shaking program (you shake the egg to separate...
Democracy Through Town Meetings

Democracy Through Town Meetings

This program was funded by a grant from the Community Radio Fund of Canada and the Government of Canada’s Local Journalism Initiative. Recent events suggest that the Regional District system does not always work well in a remote island like Cortes. Some say, it is time to Cortexit. Our Regional Director says we should work within the existing system, it would be very expensive for a community this small to go it alone. She is currently wondering how a community council system would work on Cortes Island. “A minority of very active voices has been very effective at undermining my credibility at the Regional District, but if what I brought to the district was backed by this community council it would be harder to marginalize.” In this morning’s program we go to Cambridge, Vermont, to explore how an even more democratic system of government would work here. For more than two centuries, the local authorities have been carrying out the decisions made at an annual town meeting that everyone in Cambridge can attend.. Cortes Currents broadcast Feb 1st (1 PM), 4th (5 PM) & 5th (9 AM): Roy Hales interviews George Putnam & Marguerite Ladd about a local government based on town meetings Cortes Island is about 130 sq km (50 sq mi) in extent and has a population of about 1,000. The town of Cambridge, Vermont, spreads out over 165 sq km (64 sq mi) and has a population of just under 4,000. Both communities are embedded in larger political entities that make life ‘interesting’ for us. Town Meetings Though the meeting only lasts a day, this is...
Greg Osoba On Music & Radio

Greg Osoba On Music & Radio

Originally Published on the ECOreport (Now Cortes Currents) He helped shape Cortes Radio almost since the beginning. as one of the station’s early Presidents, as a senior producer of our Deep Roots Initiative and most Fridays he hosts the Lunchtime Locomotion. In addition to this, he is a member of Cortes Island’s original rock quartet and more recently Back Eddy and the Procrastinators. In this morning’s interview, I asked Greg Osaba to tell us his story. In the podcast, Greg Osaba talks about … The radio station at Seneca College, in Ontario His eight years as a broadcast journalist in Toronto, Edmonton & Vancouver: in the newsroom and as host of “Bookshelf” Interviewing Guy Dauncey; Premier Peter Lougheed; Joe Clark; Wayne Gretsky … Asking tough questions of politicians vs interviewing a grieving family Ska, the precursor of Reggae How prerecording takes the soul out of music Gordy & Zoe Ryan from Babatunde Olatunji’s Drums of Passion; Island Rythm; Six Foot Johnson; Back Eddy and the Procrastinators When Gregor Robertson lived on Cortes Island, his first campaign (as an NDP MLA) The art of creating space, in music and life Falling in love with Cortes Island Linnaea Farm, Hollyhock, Rex Weyler as a mentor in writing, Getting involved with Cortes Radio, The Friday Lunchtime Locomotion with Nat king Cono   “There is something to that adage 10 years or 10,000 hours, because something starts to happen after that point. Once you put in your time, what starts to happen I’ve found - and other musicians I know who are experienced concur with this - is that you become competent  …....