Renfrew-Collingwood Community News

News stories from the Renfrew-Collingwood community in East Vancouver


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June 2020 issue of RCC News is here

 

Physical distancing is the new normal. But despite COVID-19, you can still stay connected to your community through the RCC News. Please stay well and safe while you’re out and about.

Click on the cover image to view the new issue.

In this issue:

  • Norquay families get used to home schooling
  • January Wolodarsky leaves CNH after 23 years of bringing community together
  • Anti-racism town hall
  • Coronavirus fact and fiction: pandemic myths brings out racism
  • Help save the Renfrew Ravine from the invasive knotweed
  • Biking Still Creek to Burnaby Lake

Do you have a local story to tell or an event to share? We’d love to hear about it! Email rccnews-editorial@cnh.bc.ca.

The deadline for the July 2020 issue is June 10.

We welcome story submissions from 300 to 400 words long. Accompanying photos must be high resolution in a jpg file at least 1 MB large and include a photo caption and the name of the photographer.


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May 2020 issue of RCC News is here

RCC News May 2020

Let’s support the many local businesses that are still open during COVID-19. Please stay well and safe while you’re out and about in the community.

Click on the cover image to view the new issue.

In this issue:

  • History of pandemics by Paul Reid
  • Collingwood Corner: Shopping in peace and quiet by Loretta Houben
  • Businesses open in Renfrew-Collingwood
  • New resident loves life in RC
  • Eating In in RC: Easy chickpea curry recipe
  • Farmers markets open in May with physical distancing
  • Living in Community: Balancing perspectives on the sex industry
  • Cash flow management and government programs during COVID-19

Do you have a local story to tell or an event to share? We’d love to hear about it! Email rccnews-editorial@cnh.bc.ca.

The deadline for the June 2020 issue is May 11.

We welcome story submissions from 300 to 400 words long. Accompanying photos must be high resolution in a jpg file at least 1 MB large and include a photo caption and the name of the photographer.


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Eating In in RC: Masala Meats

Masala Meats
Meat Market and Convenience Store
4409 Boundary Road (Boundary and 29th Avenue)
604-423-2662
www.masalameats.com

Open: Monday to Sunday, 11 am – 8 pm

BY PAUL REID

Coincidentally, after 20 years of my Eating Out in RC column here, RCC News editor Julie Cheng suggested that I do an Eating In column to highlight her new local find: Masala Meats: Meat Market and Convenience Store.

That was in early February, before our old pal COVID-19 was even on the radar. Now of course, you can’t really be eating out anywhere. So here, for the time being, welcome to Eating IN in RC, featuring Masala Meats.

This is what Julie created with the help of Masala Meats: Ginger masala boneless chicken breast with homemade curry chickpeas. Photo by Julie Cheng

It was in February when I was able to take Julie up on her recommendation, visiting Masala Meats, located over on Boundary at 29th Avenue, at the north end of Joyce Street.

Here I met proprietor, Daman Sharma. I found out that Masala Meats is his first meat shop, and that he has been open here in Renfrew-Collingwood since January.

He is doing his best to offer a wide selection of quality chicken, beef and lamb products, both non-marinated and marinated in a variety of gourmet sauces. Chicken wings, breasts and kababs; barbecue beef steaks, beef ribs and beef kababs; barbecue lamb chops and lamb kababs in your favourite sauces: Jaipuri teekha masala, butter chicken, tandoori masala, ginger masala, tandoori … is your mouth watering yet?

For my meat selection, I settled on 2 pounds of chicken wings: lemon ginger and ginger masala (both medium spiciness). I will be back to try the Jaipuri teekha masala wings (hot).

I also checked out the wide variety of goods that Daman has in his convenience store section. Here one can find a range of Indian grocery and daily use items.

In the frozen section, I found a package of cassava fries; these should go nice with my wings, I thought.

Taking it home, I cooked the chicken wings (350 degrees C for 30 minutes), flipping them halfway through. The cassava fries went in the oven as well for 15 minutes. Voila – a gourmet feast of wings and fries that was both affordable and easy.

The wings were, of course, fresh, not frozen, and yet I would say more affordable than the frozen. The sauces that Masala Meats marinates them in are really gourmet.

You must taste for yourself. The cassava fries were an excellent addition as well.

So why RC would we not all head over to Masala Meats this instant to try all of this goodness that they have to offer? I recently spoke with Daman. He would like to let the community know that his store is open and that bonus meat kababs are being added to every purchase. So run, don’t walk, to see Daman over at Masala Meats and convenience store.

Still, let’s not forget our favourite local restaurants that have been hit so hard by all of this coronavirus pandemic. Many, although closed, are still offering delivery and take out.

Copyright 2020 Renfrew-Collingwood Community News


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April 2020 issue of RCC News is here

 

RCC News April 2020

Time to get outside and take care of our health. This issue of the RCC News full of the many wonderful people, events and programs happening in our neighbourhood to keep you active.

Get your latest issue of the RCC News at your local coffee shop, grocery store, library and community centre.

Or click on the cover image to view the new issue.

In this issue:

  • Dear Neighbours: Message from Health Minister Adrian Dix on COVID-19
  • Eating In in RC: Masala Meats
  • Importance of bioswales
  • 20 years of Collingwood Tax Clinic
  • Three Links Care Centre expands infection control measures
  • Windermere students Get R.E.A.L.
  • Haiku from the Creative Writing Class at CNH

Do you have a local story to tell or an event to share? We’d love to hear about it! Email rccnews-editorial@cnh.bc.ca.

The deadline for the May 2020 issue is April 10.

We welcome story submissions from 300 to 400 words long. Accompanying photos must be high resolution in a jpg file at least 1 MB large and include a photo caption and the name of the photographer.


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Flower arrangement workshop makes gifts for seniors

The Ava Maria Garden workshop turned out to be an opportunity for community members to connect with each other. One participant brought children who assisted and enjoyed Valentine cookies. Photos by Deanna Cheng

BY DEANNA CHENG

Jane Wong led a group of participants on February 8, 2020 to create artistic flower arrangements with preserved roses, preserved hydrangea and moss. The workshop was held at St. Mary’s Elementary School and is an initiative of Ava Maria Garden, a charity based in Hong Kong.

The former florist said the event had two purposes. First, for each participant to take home a personal gift of flowers to brighten her home. “These are good as gifts for those who don’t want to take care of it, like watering and changing the soil.”

She added, “If there’s dust on the flowers, just blow it gently with a fan or a paintbrush. You could even use a makeup brush.”

Jane Wong used to run her own business in the wedding industry for over five years, back in Hong Kong. She arrived in Vancouver this past summer and was looking for ways to get to know the community.

Preserved flowers are different from live ones, Wong said. The ones used in the workshop are treated with a machine and chemicals and they will last from one to three years with minimal upkeep.

Over time, the colour will fade but the blooms will retain their shape, she said. More thought and consideration is put into the arrangement of preserved flowers because recipients will have to look at them for a long time.

“Layering the flowers in your arrangement will make it look more natural like a garden,” Wong said. “Nothing is straight and even in nature.”

Workshop participant Vee Caylin was interested in the event because she had never worked with preserved flowers before. She works in the event industry and only interacts with live flowers. It was also her first time creating a flower arrangement around a miniature statue.

The second purpose of the workshop was to create extra flower arrangements as gifts for seniors at Courtyard Terrace Seniors Community. Wong said the ones for the seniors will be created with silk flowers because they will require minimal care and they wouldn’t aggravate any allergies.

The next flower workshop Wong is hosting will be for Mother’s Day. For those interested, she can be reached at jane@avamariagarden.org.

Deanna Cheng is a freelance journalist and copy editor. Her work has been published in New Canadian Media and Vancouver Courier. She has also been a resident for the last 15 years. Contact: dmwcheng7@gmail.com.

Copyright 2020 Renfrew-Collingwood Community News


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All’Italiana: Italian fashion in the spotlight

The knit pom poms on these two outfits hark back to clowns, a popular stock character in Italian opera. Italy has a long history and strong heritage in professional theatre with Commedia dell’arte (“Italian comedy”). One of the most famous Italian operas is Pagliacci (Italian for “clowns” or “players”). Photos courtesy of the Italian Cultural Centre

New exhibit at the Italian Cultural Centre

All’Italiana
Italian Cultural Centre
3075 Slocan Street, Vancouver
http://www.italianculturalcentre.ca
Tuesday to Saturday, 10 am to 5 pm

BY DEANNA CHENG

The latest exhibition at the Italian Cultural Centre focuses on the highlights of Italian fashion in the 20th century, featuring garments by Pucci, Schiaparelli and Fortuny.

Guest curator Ivan Sayers wanted to focus on Italian fashion because the spotlight is usually on French, American or British fashion. “Italy is extremely important, especially in leather goods and accessories but also with mainstream garments.”

The show is an opportunity to admire Italian ingenuity, wit, craftsmanship and quality, he said.

On display until April 25, All’Italiana (“in the Italian style”) is part of a celebration of craftsmanship by the Craft Council of BC. The theme of this year is “voices of craft.”

Sayers said, “Craft usually means handwork.” And handwork is visible in the handmade raffia lace of the Fortuny dress, he said, and in the decoration on the Schiaparelli coat. “It’s beading. It’s eccentric. It’s still labour intensive.”

He added, “When you look at the Prada suit, initially, it seems banal but when you start to look at the seaming and the skirt, you start to appreciate what’s gone into it, lifting it from boring to intriguing.”

There’s construction, decoration, ratio and proportion that people tend to ignore, but it still has value, he said.

Museum curator Angela Clarke said the exhibit explores craft because it often gets a bad name. “Craft is often looked at as something that you often find in your grandmother’s place. You know, doilies.”

It’s often seen as surface design without much in terms of artistic integrity, originality, a voice of the artist or social commentary, she said. “Craft is often recreating a tradition. There are often patterns incorporated into craft that have been used almost like a stencil.”

When you knit, you base it on a pattern, Clarke said. If you embroider, you base it on a pattern. “And that is sort of a counter to this notion that all art creation is individual and it’s a one-off. So craft gets a bad name for that.”

Garments are considered like that because they have a pattern. The world of fashion is changing because it’s the name of the designer that we come to for and that often separates craft from art, she said.

Historically, there were some names that were developing such as Schiaparelli through the 1930s and Christian Dior in the late 40s and 50s. It’s not to the same degree as today, she said, where the name is everything. “We now have celebrities with clothing lines and certainly, they’re not the ones designing and making the garments at all.”

She said, “Today, everyone wants to be a designer but no one wants to be a tailor.”

“The fact is that craft often represents underrepresented voices,” added Clarke.

Guest curator Ivan Sayers said Italy is the birthplace of lace. Italian lace comes from the fishing culture in small Italian towns, drawing inspiration from fishing nets.

For example, textiles and embroidery were considered the realm of women’s history, she said. “And for the most part, that’s all we’ve got of women’s history for the middle and lower classes. Anything out of the household, the domestic space, it’s all about women.”

Italian fashion also constantly refers to its own history from the materials to the construction. For example, Clarke said, Italian lace arises from fishing culture as an improvisation of the fishing net.

The fishing net has become part of the cultural consciousness of Italian villages because it’s the major industry. “You get these towns, these whole towns, that are in Italy that are devoted to certain craft industries such as Venetian glass and ceramics.”

It’s partially so they can share resources, she said. The other part is due to technology used for the flammable arts.

If you were to make anything glass or ceramic in Rome, Venice or Milan, the whole city would go up in flames in half an hour if there was an accident because buildings were made of wood, Clarke said.

Legislation was created, stating these industries had to be 10 miles outside of a major city centre.

Another sign of Italian heritage is the knit pom poms on the Paoli dress. The colourful fluffy attachments refer to the clown, popular in Italian opera, she said. The significance of this character spread across Europe by travelling Italian troupes.

“Clowns show up repeatedly because it’s the stock character of a figure that can say anything, do anything, and you feel compassion for them,” Clarke said. “It’s like the joker in Shakespeare. He’s the one who entertains the king but he’s the only one that can actually speak the truth.”

Rich Nguyen, an attendee, visited Italy last year and the selection of Schiaparelli and Pucci within the exhibit speaks to him the most as “Italian.”

This collection features garments from the collection of fashion historian Ivan Sayers, the Museum of Vancouver and the Society for the Museum of Original Costume.

Deanna Cheng is a freelance journalist and copy editor. Her work has been published in New Canadian Media and Vancouver Courier. She has also been a resident for the last 15 years. Contact: dmwcheng7@gmail.com.


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March 2020 issue of RCC News is here

RCC News March 2020

It’s spring and it’s time to get outside! This issue of the RCC News full of the many wonderful people, events and programs happening in our neighbourhood to keep you active.

Get your latest issue of the RCC News at your local coffee shop, grocery store, library and community centre.

Or click on the cover image to view the new issue.

In this issue:

  • Get involved in local stewardship of Renfrew Ravine and Still Creek
  • Italian fashion in the spotlight – New exhibit at the Italian Cultural Centre
  • Preserved flower arrangement workshop makes gifts for a good cause
  • Personal finance: Do you have a trusted contact person?
  • Najia Elacel honoured for her community contributions
  • Now is the time to act on those dreams
  • Noticed in Renfrew-Collingwood: Tired man with new pillow

Do you have a local story to tell or an event to share? We’d love to hear about it! Email rccnews-editorial@cnh.bc.ca.

The deadline for the April 2020 issue is March 10.

We welcome story submissions from 300 to 400 words long. Accompanying photos must be high resolution in a jpg file at least 1 MB large and include a photo caption and the name of the photographer.