Monday, May 31, 2010

Ocean Discovery

Last week, one of my friends and I packed up our kids and headed to Sidney. We went to the Shaw Ocean Discovery Center, which is an amazing new facility with lots to offer. The kids looked through microscopes, saw the jellies, went in a "submarine", and spent plenty of time in the touch pool. It's a great way for them to explore the ocean food web, the displays are stunning and encourage questions and exploration. Next door is Mineral World, a place for the kids to do a little outdoor gold panning, search for semi-precious gemstones and gather some sea shells. It's a great day trip from Gabriola and gives a different view than we see at the beach.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Gabriola Photography Blog

I recently read a blog that Peter Llewellyn, a photographer on Gabriola, wrote about point and shoot cameras. It's been a year since mine was unfortunately dropped just minutes after receiving it, while it still functioned well for family photos, it didn't do the job for work. I read his article, wrote down the model and headed to Nanaimo for my purchase. I ended up with a similar model, not the same as in the end I realized mine needn't be fast as his, he was photographing Olympic athletes. I'm really enjoying my new camera, it's compact, easy to use, light, has an amazing zoom and takes great photos. I took this shot of the beautiful poppies my mom has growing in her garden with my new Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS7. If your interested in photography I would recommend following Peter's blogs and if you have the time take one of his workshops.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Native Plants on the Gulf Islands

Tomorrow (May 27th), our Coast Realty Office will be closed and all the Realtors ® and staff will head over to the Gabriola Museum give back to the community by caring for the Native Plant garden at the Museum. I thought I would get a head start and do a little web research about a few of the native plants I’ve seen on walks and came across the Chocolate Lily (one of my favourites) on the The Garry Oak Ecosystems Recovery Team (GOERT) website. The website has great information on how to beautify your garden with native plants, remove invasive plants and restore Garry Oak Habitat. It also lists nurseries on Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands that supply native plants. If you’re on the island this summer stop by the Museum to view some of Gabriola’s native plant species.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

May long weekend on Gabriola

We’ve seen the Island kick off into summer mode this long weekend, the parking lot around the Folklife Village has been busy. There was a well attended pancake fundraiser for the Gabriola Healthcare Auxillary in the parking lot in the morning and it was also the first day of the 2010 Farmers Market (held at the AGI hall on Saturdays from 10-12). A few stores are now open in the Madrona Marketplace, we had a chance to look at Brent G Studio and A Slice Of Life.

If you are traveling to Gabriola in the next few weeks, please be advised that the MV Quinsam is now back in service but is not keeping up speed. This means that there have been delays to the schedule, please accommodate for this in your plans. We expect to have a new schedule effective May 27 2010.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Gabriola's waterfront parks

Gabriola is a great Island for many reasons, one of the important ones is the numerous access points that you have to the beach. We've had some great weather in the last week, which led me to one of the waterfront parks in the Whalebone area. These "neighborhood" parks were well thought out, there are 5 located in this area, each have two pathway allowances into the park and have at least 6 homes bordering onto them, I think it was a great way to share the waterfront properties. The waterfront parks, have nice cleared areas, gorgeous north facing views, and some have benches so that you can sit down and enjoy the view.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

The fishing is good on Gabriola.

My husband and a few of his friends took the boat out and hit slack tide last night (it was around 6). It was the perfect afternoon to be fishing, the sun was shining and there was little wind to be found. They hooked up an army truck hootchy to their line and reeled in a 15 & 22lb salmon just off the Old Grande Hotel (Dragons Lane, Gabriola) they kept their gear set between 50 to 100 feet and were about 2 miles off shore. Look for surface bait, a good indication that fish will be there. If you're looking to go fishing check you tide book, usually the best fishing is 1 hour before to an hour after slack tide.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

The 2010 Gabriola STUDIO TOUR brochure is out!

On May 11th, the Gabriola Arts Council launched the new "Studio Tour 2010 Gabriola Island" brochure at the Roxy. Nina (Paprika Designs) has once again produced a glossy and visually stunning brochure. This year you will find 38 artists on the tour, offering a bit of everything in each price range, gather gifts or buy yourself some fabulous local art. Artists marked with a star, indicate that they are new on the tour. My sister and I are going on the tour together this year, we're really looking forward to the whole process, from gathering materials, creating pieces, displaying our work and opening the doors on the Thanksgiving long weekend. Want to get an early glimpse of the brochure? pop into Artworks, grab a coffee and check it out!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Gabriola- winner of paint the grey box is.....

The decision has been made and Gabriola’s very own Melinda Wilde has been selected as the winner to paint the grey electrical box at the Gabriola Ferry Terminal. We’ve heard that the submissions to choose from were amazing, not at all surprising for an Island full of artists. The work is set to be underway before the May long weekend, it will be the first thing you see as you come onto the Island and the last thing you see when you leave the Isle of the Arts.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Welcome to the Folklife Village Neighborhood !

A stroll down the boardwalk brings you by our newest neighbor at the Village . The Island Book Shoppe has just opened on May 1st in unit 6 of the Folklife Village, a few doors down from our Coast Realty Office. The book Shoppe will be open 6 days a week from 10-4:30, closed on Sunday. You'll find a great assortment of slightly used books as well as new books by local Gabriola authors. I went by today and found the three titles that I was looking for, I'm really looking forward to enjoying reading "The Swiss Family Robinson" with my kids. Sharon McInnes & Dennis Johnston are the owners, and we really hope that enjoy success in their new location!