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News Briefs: Monday, September 26, 2011

Cemetery bylaw drafted

Town of Hay River administration has drafted a cemetery bylaw with help from members of the community.

The town has never regulated its cemetery by bylaw.

The town council will discuss how to proceed with the draft bylaw at its meeting on Sept. 26.

- Paul Bickford

New Arctic ice lows

The Arctic sea ice was at its lowest recorded point in history on Sept. 8, according to physicists at the University of Bremen in Germany.

"This is another puzzle piece which confirms, I think, that global warming is man-made and caused by increased CO2 (carbon dioxide) content in the atmosphere," said Dr. Georg Heygster, who has studied sea ice at both poles for years.

According to satellite images, there were 4.24 million square kilometres of Arctic sea ice on Sept. 8.

- Nathalie Heiberg-Harrison

Grand opening in Tsiigehtchic

Tsiigehtchic's community learning centre - a satellite campus of Aurora College - had its grand re-opening on Sept. 21.

Although there has been a learning centre in Tsiigehtchic for many years, Sept. 8 marked the first time classes started in its newly-built, modern facility named for former Chief Joe Bernard.

Around 75 people attended a feast to commemorate the occasion and John Jerome, Bernard's son, cut the ceremonial ribbon.

According to adult educator Sandra Drost, they will continue to offer mainly upgrading courses this fall.

- Nathalie Heiberg-Harrison

Society holds founding AGM

The Thebacha and Wood Buffalo Astronomical Society held its founding annual general meeting on Sept. 14. Five people were elected to the new society's executive - Mike Couvrette, chairperson; Larry Nixon, vice-chairperson; Karl Johnston, secretary; Kalina Hadziev, treasurer; and Tim Gauthier, who is responsible for outreach/events.

Fifteen people attended the AGM.

- Paul Bickford

Free workshops

The Inuvik Youth and Family Support organization will offer two free workshops per week.

On Tuesdays, parents looking for solutions can attend the Parenting Support Group from 1:30 to 3 p.m. every week. On Thursdays, the workshop will be a conflict resolution group, also from 1:30 to 3 p.m.

- Samantha Stokell

Film 101 at Chief Julius School

Tetlit'Zheh/Fort McPherson

Students at Chief Julius School in Fort McPherson learned about the magic of making movies when the film crew for The Sun At Midnight stopped by.

Writer and director Kirsten Carthew, along with producer Michael Vernon and cinematographer Darcie Profeit, visited the school on the morning of Sept. 14 to talk about filmmaking and visual storytelling.

They also discussed The Sun At Midnight, a dramatic film they hope to shoot in the Gwich'in Settlement Area next year.

Carthew, Vernon and Profeit also conducted a film feasibility study during their stay.

- Nathalie Heiberg-Harrison

Finding a common ground

Tuktoyaktuk

On Sept. 17, Kitti Community Hall in Tuktoyaktuk hosted an interfaith symposium to discuss the role of women in building healthy societies.

Representatives from five different faiths and cultures - aboriginal, Christianity, Judaism, Islam and Sikhism - gave short presentations, then were available for questions from the audience.

Jean Gruben moderated the event, which ran from 12:30 p.m. to 3 p.m.

The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community organized the symposium with the goal of increasing understanding and building friendships between different faiths.

They also held a symposium in Inuvik on Sept. 18, which attracted around 20 people.

- Nathalie Heiberg-Harrison

Walking Victoria Island

Ulukhaktok/Holman

On Sept. 28 and 29, residents of Ulukhaktok will get the opportunity to try Nordic walking on for size.

Sheena Tremblay, active communities co-ordinator for the NWT Recreation and Parks Association, will be in the community to offer courses and deliver new poles to use.

All ages are welcome to take part and no experience is necessary.

Throughout August, Tremblay visited other communities, including Tsiigehtchic, Fort McPherson and Inuvik.

She had originally planned to visit Ulukhaktok Aug. 20 and 21, but rescheduled so her stay wouldn't conflict with the arrival of the barge.

- Nathalie Heiberg-Harrison

A 125-km journey for $6,000

Tsiigehtchic/Arctic Red River

Carol and Pearl Norwegian's cancer walk-a-thon ended in Tsiigehtchic on Aug. 11, but, according to Carol, they're still not done collecting money.

To date, the family has raised more than $6,000, easily surpassing their goal of $5,000, and Carol said donations keep coming in.

Carol and Pearl began their walk-a-thon in Inuvik on Aug. 8 and spent four days walking 125 km from Inuvik to Tsiig-ehtchic.

In 2006, Carol completed the walk with her mother, Therese Remy-Sawyer, to commemorate the life of her stepfather, Tom Sawyer, who died from prostate cancer in 2001.

When her mother died from lung cancer last year, Carol decided to go ahead with the walk to remember both their lives.

She walked the entire 125 km with her sister Pearl, and was accompanied by her brother Joey Klein, who drove behind them, and her two children.

- Nathalie Heiberg-Harrison

New learning centre opens

K'atlodeeche/Hay River Reserve

A new community learning centre of Aurora College officially opened on the Hay River Reserve on Sept. 16.

The opening of the Chief Daniel Sonfrere Community Learning Centre fulfills a long-awaited vision of K'atlodeeche First Nation (KFN).

Chief Roy Fabian noted the KFN has always wanted to have an appropriate building for adult learners.

"We are especially pleased that it is now a reality and that the building has been named in honour of Chief Daniel Sonfrere," said Fabian in a news release.

Along with his past service as chief, Sonfrere is now a respected elder on the reserve.

The building was created in a partnership involving KFN; the Department of Education, Culture and Employment; the Department of Public Works and Services; and the federal government's Knowledge Infrastructure Program.

"The facility will enable Aurora College to better serve the Hay River Reserve," said college president Sarah Wright Cardinal.

The new 2,500-sq-ft. learning centre is located near the KFN band office.

The facility has one classroom, one computer lab and a kitchen.

- Paul Bickford

Music night to be rescheduled

Hay River

The music of Michael Jackson and the 1990s will be featured at an upcoming monthly music night at the public library in Hay River.

The special evening - in which people perform their favourite songs - had been scheduled for Sept. 30, but won't be held on that date to avoid conflict with the International Lute Festival in Hay River.

The music night at the library will be rescheduled for a later date.

- Paul Bickford

Smith society holds AGM

Thebacha/Fort Smith

Fort Smith's Northern Anthropological and Cultural Society - the operator of Northern Life Museum and Cultural Centre - held its annual general meeting on Sept. 11.

Three board members were re-elected for two years - Stuart Macmillan, Sydney O'Sullivan and Melissa Zimmer. Three others - Tim Gauthier, Valerie Rosen and Diane Seals - were also chosen for the board.

Board members Jeri Miltenberger and Vance Sanderson were not up for re-election this year.

After the new board was chosen, the members elected a new executive.

Three executive members were re-elected - Miltenberger as chair, Macmillan as treasurer and Zimmer as secretary. O'Sullivan was elected vice-chair.

About a dozen people attended the AGM. Paul Bickford

Cemetery bylaw drafted

Town of Hay River administration has drafted a cemetery bylaw with help from members of the community.

The town has never regulated its cemetery by bylaw.

The town council will discuss how to proceed with the draft bylaw at its meeting on Sept. 26.

- Paul Bickford

New Arctic ice lows

The Arctic sea ice was at its lowest recorded point in history on Sept. 8, according to physicists at the University of Bremen in Germany.

"This is another puzzle piece which confirms, I think, that global warming is man-made and caused by increased CO2 (carbon dioxide) content in the atmosphere," said Dr. Georg Heygster, who has studied sea ice at both poles for years.

According to satellite images, there were 4.24 million square kilometres of Arctic sea ice on Sept. 8.

- Nathalie Heiberg-Harrison

Grand opening in Tsiigehtchic

Tsiigehtchic's community learning centre - a satellite campus of Aurora College - had its grand re-opening on Sept. 21.

Although there has been a learning centre in Tsiigehtchic for many years, Sept. 8 marked the first time classes started in its newly-built, modern facility named for former Chief Joe Bernard.

Around 75 people attended a feast to commemorate the occasion and John Jerome, Bernard's son, cut the ceremonial ribbon.

According to adult educator Sandra Drost, they will continue to offer mainly upgrading courses this fall.

- Nathalie Heiberg-Harrison

Society holds founding AGM

The Thebacha and Wood Buffalo Astronomical Society held its founding annual general meeting on Sept. 14. Five people were elected to the new society's executive - Mike Couvrette, chairperson; Larry Nixon, vice-chairperson; Karl Johnston, secretary; Kalina Hadziev, treasurer; and Tim Gauthier, who is responsible for outreach/events.

Fifteen people attended the AGM.

- Paul Bickford

Free workshops

The Inuvik Youth and Family Support organization will offer two free workshops per week.

On Tuesdays, parents looking for solutions can attend the Parenting Support Group from 1:30 to 3 p.m. every week. On Thursdays, the workshop will be a conflict resolution group, also from 1:30 to 3 p.m.

- Samantha Stokell

Film 101 at Chief Julius School

Tetlit'Zheh/Fort McPherson

Students at Chief Julius School in Fort McPherson learned about the magic of making movies when the film crew for The Sun At Midnight stopped by.

Writer and director Kirsten Carthew, along with producer Michael Vernon and cinematographer Darcie Profeit, visited the school on the morning of Sept. 14 to talk about filmmaking and visual storytelling.

They also discussed The Sun At Midnight, a dramatic film they hope to shoot in the Gwich'in Settlement Area next year.

Carthew, Vernon and Profeit also conducted a film feasibility study during their stay.

- Nathalie Heiberg-Harrison

Finding a common ground

Tuktoyaktuk

On Sept. 17, Kitti Community Hall in Tuktoyaktuk hosted an interfaith symposium to discuss the role of women in building healthy societies.

Representatives from five different faiths and cultures - aboriginal, Christianity, Judaism, Islam and Sikhism - gave short presentations, then were available for questions from the audience.

Jean Gruben moderated the event, which ran from 12:30 p.m. to 3 p.m.

The Ahmadiyya Muslim Community organized the symposium with the goal of increasing understanding and building friendships between different faiths.

They also held a symposium in Inuvik on Sept. 18, which attracted around 20 people.

- Nathalie Heiberg-Harrison

Walking Victoria Island

Ulukhaktok/Holman

On Sept. 28 and 29, residents of Ulukhaktok will get the opportunity to try Nordic walking on for size.

Sheena Tremblay, active communities co-ordinator for the NWT Recreation and Parks Association, will be in the community to offer courses and deliver new poles to use.

All ages are welcome to take part and no experience is necessary.

Throughout August, Tremblay visited other communities, including Tsiigehtchic, Fort McPherson and Inuvik.

She had originally planned to visit Ulukhaktok Aug. 20 and 21, but rescheduled so her stay wouldn't conflict with the arrival of the barge.

- Nathalie Heiberg-Harrison

A 125-km journey for $6,000

Tsiigehtchic/Arctic Red River

Carol and Pearl Norwegian's cancer walk-a-thon ended in Tsiigehtchic on Aug. 11, but, according to Carol, they're still not done collecting money.

To date, the family has raised more than $6,000, easily surpassing their goal of $5,000, and Carol said donations keep coming in.

Carol and Pearl began their walk-a-thon in Inuvik on Aug. 8 and spent four days walking 125 km from Inuvik to Tsiig-ehtchic.

In 2006, Carol completed the walk with her mother, Therese Remy-Sawyer, to commemorate the life of her stepfather, Tom Sawyer, who died from prostate cancer in 2001.

When her mother died from lung cancer last year, Carol decided to go ahead with the walk to remember both their lives.

She walked the entire 125 km with her sister Pearl, and was accompanied by her brother Joey Klein, who drove behind them, and her two children.

- Nathalie Heiberg-Harrison

New learning centre opens

K'atlodeeche/Hay River Reserve

A new community learning centre of Aurora College officially opened on the Hay River Reserve on Sept. 16.

The opening of the Chief Daniel Sonfrere Community Learning Centre fulfills a long-awaited vision of K'atlodeeche First Nation (KFN).

Chief Roy Fabian noted the KFN has always wanted to have an appropriate building for adult learners.

"We are especially pleased that it is now a reality and that the building has been named in honour of Chief Daniel Sonfrere," said Fabian in a news release.

Along with his past service as chief, Sonfrere is now a respected elder on the reserve.

The building was created in a partnership involving KFN; the Department of Education, Culture and Employment; the Department of Public Works and Services; and the federal government's Knowledge Infrastructure Program.

"The facility will enable Aurora College to better serve the Hay River Reserve," said college president Sarah Wright Cardinal.

The new 2,500-sq-ft. learning centre is located near the KFN band office.

The facility has one classroom, one computer lab and a kitchen.

- Paul Bickford

Music night to be rescheduled

Hay River

The music of Michael Jackson and the 1990s will be featured at an upcoming monthly music night at the public library in Hay River.

The special evening - in which people perform their favourite songs - had been scheduled for Sept. 30, but won't be held on that date to avoid conflict with the International Lute Festival in Hay River.

The music night at the library will be rescheduled for a later date.

- Paul Bickford

Smith society holds AGM

Thebacha/Fort Smith

Fort Smith's Northern Anthropological and Cultural Society - the operator of Northern Life Museum and Cultural Centre - held its annual general meeting on Sept. 11.

Three board members were re-elected for two years - Stuart Macmillan, Sydney O'Sullivan and Melissa Zimmer. Three others - Tim Gauthier, Valerie Rosen and Diane Seals - were also chosen for the board.

Board members Jeri Miltenberger and Vance Sanderson were not up for re-election this year.

After the new board was chosen, the members elected a new executive.

Three executive members were re-elected - Miltenberger as chair, Macmillan as treasurer and Zimmer as secretary. O'Sullivan was elected vice-chair.

About a dozen people attended the AGM. Paul Bickford

Book fair

Taloyoak/Spence Bay

Many Taloyoak residents and Netsilik School students were browsing through 500 to 600 books on sale, as the school was holding its fall Scholastic Book Fair last week.

Principal Gina Pizzo said the books, for preschoolers to adults, are very popular in the community. Posters and school supplies are also for sale.

"Sales are brisk. They've got some really nice books so it's always with great anticipation when people come to the book fair," she said.

- Jeanne Gagnon

New tower under construction

Kugluktuk/Coppermine

A new, higher communications tower is currently being installed farther from Kugluktuk's residential area than originally planned.

A number of residents were opposed to the original location of SSI Micro's Internet tower as it was next to some housing, but it seems a common ground has been found as the new location was recently approved.

Senior administrative officer Don Leblanc said he is pleased the tower is being installed.

"It's been relocated near the CBC tower, so it's on the opposite side of the original location. The location now is totally separate from everything. It's on its own," he said. "Everybody is satisfied with it being there. The council, community and the people who are installing it are happy. There has been no objections."

The approximately 18-metre tower, a higher and sturdier structure than the previous one, to be installed by the end of September, will give better Internet coverage to the community and the Government of Nunavut.

Dean Proctor, the chief development officer at SSI Group of Companies, said his company will issue a statement to the community on its plans going forward.

"The other location was very good too but this one will work for us, certainly. Coverage should be good and everybody seems to be quite happy with it," he said. "The upgrades are not only to upgrade the service for the Qiniq customers but also because of the Government of Nunavut. This isn't so much speed per say; it's reliability of the service."

He added as the new tower is higher, it will enable them to add antennas if necessary.

"We're just really happy this is actually coming to a good resolution," said Proctor. "With the community, we tried to work very hard to find a solution suitable for everybody. I hope we've done that."

- Jeanne Gagnon

Delegation visits Cape Dorset

Kinngait/Cape Dorset

A 13-member delegation of senior federal government officials visited Cape Dorset on Sept. 15 to learn about the community, the jobs, the main economic drivers and the community's needs.

Senior Administrative Officer Olayuk Akesuk said he met with the delegation, along with the mayor, RCMP, and Canadian Rangers.

"It went well. They were here to ask questions more than anything," he said. "They had lunch here. We served them Arctic char, soup and bannock and they really enjoyed it."

- Jeanne Gagnon

Flight delays

Mittimatalik/Pond Inlet

Flights to and from Pond Inlet still faced delays and cancellations as the town's non-directional beacon is being replaced, hamlet economic development officer Colin Saunders said September 20.

"It's what the airplanes home in on when they are approaching," Saunders said. "Ours beams out CYAO, which is the airport code for Pond Inlet. It's been a hit-and-miss week for airlines, so they're more cautious about coming in."

The health centre has warned that if its medevac pilots have to fly by VFR (visual flight rules), meaning they can't fly if they can't see the runway, "they won't be able to get any medevacs in and out of town," he said.

The delays were expected to continue until the weekend of the 24th.

- Casey Lessard

Community orientation

Mittimatalik/Pond Inlet

Hamlet officials in Pond Inlet are preparing to host Quebec-based U.S. Consul-General Peter O'Donohue Sept. 26 and 27.

"We're going to give him a parks orientation, a community tour, a meeting with regional officials, tours at the schools, and a meeting with hamlet council," hamlet Economic Development Officer Colin Saunders said.

The hamlet has hosted O'Donohue's predecessor in the past, and Saunders suggests she must have recommended a visit to Pond Inlet. The hamlet also hosts an annual meeting of foreign ambassadors to Canada each June as part of a tour of the nation.

"It's just such a beautiful community," Saunders said of why the hamlet is a consistent destination. "We have great scenery up here, and it's a tourist attraction. Plus, we've been able to facilitate good visits in the past. We try to roll out the red carpet while they're here."

- Casey Lessard

Gym opens up in Grise Fiord

Ausuittuq/Grise Fiord

A sure sign of summer's departure in Grise Fiord is the nightly opening of the community gym, which started welcoming young people for activities Sept. 14.

"Our gym is usually closed for the summer, and it reopened after the sealift," said Melissa Patey with the recreation department. "Kids don't like to be inside when it's nice outside and we have 24-hour daylight."

The gym has been full of kids each night since it opened, Patey said. Supervised activities include dodgeball, kickball, hockey, or whatever games the kids want to play.

"We have snow now. It's cold and dark at night," she said. "It's no fun to be outside when it's dark."

- Casey Lessard