Working at the Richmond Curling Club

I begin this week’s column on a sad note.  Over the past several years, I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Bev McRae on many occasions for this very newspaper.  I learned late Sunday evening that Bev had passed away.  Bev was the wife of the late Earl McRae, longtime Ottawa Sun columnist, who passed away in 2011.  She will be missed. I’m sure the thoughts and prayers of many longtime Messenger readers are with the McRae family. 

Shiverfest 2016 – January 29 & 30

Winter is here and it is time for Manotick’s Shiverfest celebration!

Friday evening is full of family fun starting at 6:00pm with the Rideau Skating Club exhibition, followed with the outdoor bonfire, the family skate, and the magic show in the upstairs hall at the Manotick Arena.

Saturday includes the Kiwanis pancake breakfast, Children’s Fun Time, horse-drawn sleigh rides, tobogganing and skating, bingo.

For the first time this year, you’ll have the opportunity to learn the sport of curling, sponsored by the Manotick Curling Club. There will be floor curling and hourly on-ice tryouts at 10:00am, 11:00am, 12:00pm, and 1:00pm at the Manotick Curling Centre on Saturday.

Also on Saturday is the Chili Cook Off – both professional and amateur chefs welcome. To enter please email Even if you can’t cook, you can still “judge” by paying a $5 entrance fee.

The Trivia Contest is back this year, too. Tickets are limited and can be purchased for $15 each by emailing or from Manotick Office Pro. Profits from the Trivia Contest and the Chili Cook Off will be donated to the Manotick Area Expansion Project.

If you enjoy photography, the Celebrating Winter Photography Contest may be of interest to you. Submissions will be accepted until February 14th. Check out rules and details for submissions at

For full details on all these Shiverfest activities and contests go to the Manotick Village and Community Association website at

Councillor for Hire

As many of you may recall, since 2011, I have lent out my services to various Rideau-Goulbourn businesses and services as part of my Councillor for Hire initiative. For the most part, I have done a different job each month but I skip a few months every now and then. In November 2015, I had the pleasure of helping out at the Richmond Curling Club for their 50+ Funspiel. It was great fun helping to serve lunch, mingling with the curlers and watching some of the excitement from the viewing area.

The Richmond Curling Club began in 1960 and is the only curling club in the entire southwest region of Ottawa. Many curlers come from Kanata, Stittsville and Barrhaven to enjoy the fun and hospitality that the club offers in their many leagues and events. One of the unique connections that I have to the Richmond Curling Club is that my grandmother, Hilda Moore, was the first female President of the Club during the 1961-62 season. Interestingly, since its inception in 1960, the Richmond Curling Club has always alternated between male and female Presidents.

I just want to thank the club for inviting me to spend a day with them and for not working me too hard. If you’d like to learn more about the Richmond Curling Club, you can visit In a future column, I’ll detail my most recent Councillor for Hire experience, which was just last week in the 311 call centre. If you’d like to “hire” me for a day, let me know.  I come cheap!

An Afternoon in Austria

The Goulbourn Jubilee Singers European Tour Choir invites all music-lovers to taste the music and flavours of an elegant Viennese café on Sunday, February 7th, at 2pm. The programme will include light classical music presented by a talented array of performers. The lineup includes the Interlude string trio; Sarah Burnell, soprano; Annie Duchesne, mezzo-soprano; Lindsay Allan, clarinetist; and the Goulbourn Jubilee Singers European Tour Choir. The composers represented are all associated with the rich Viennese musical tradition. You will be treated to lieder and opera arias, chamber music favourites, and a selection of famous choral pieces.

This event is inspired by the up-coming tour to Austria and the Czech Republic by members of the adult choir of the Goulbourn Jubilee Singers in July, 2016. They will be led by conductor Linda Crawford and accompanist Bonnie MacDiarmid. This ensemble will be participating in the annual choral festival at the famous Salzburg Mozarteum, and also performing at the Salzburg Cathedral and at other venues in the Salzburg region. Later, they will perform two concerts in Prague, joining forces with local musicians. This Afternoon in Austria café-concert is a fund-raiser for that trip.

Admission ($25pp or $10 for children under 12) includes the concert, coffee or tea, and your choice of a Viennese café treat (sachertorte, linzertorte, or apfelstrudel). These iconic desserts will be home-made by our talented bakers in the choir. The venue is Trinity Presbyterian Church, 1817 Richardson Side Road. Winter boots are not permitted in the sanctuary, so please consider bringing indoor shoes. For tickets, please call Brian at 613-591-1937 or email Jim at


If you have any comments, questions or concerns, please feel free to email me at or contact me by phone at 613-580-2491.