Thursday, 26 September 2013

Generation Green at The Forks' First Anniversary

Wow, what a whirlwind year it has been! I seriously cannot believe that September 29th, will make it one year that Generation Green at The Forks has been open!

When I decided to open a "Green Living" store, I knew The Forks would be the perfect location, and when starting a new business, location means everything! The traffic at The Forks is great! Not only is it tourists that find The Forks a must do, but us locals love The Forks for the unique shopping experiences, the venues, the food, or even just a place to gather with friends, people watch, and enjoy life at a slower pace.

My highlight for the year has to be all the wonderful people I have met, both customers and my neighbours here within The Forks! I love how as a community we can learn so much from each other!

I look forward to the next year, learning more, meeting new people, finding innovative products, and hopefully helping more people find alternatives for greener living.

A big thank you to everyone that has offered their support to us! As I have said in the past; "it is because of you that we are here, and it's because of you that we will stay!"

Sherry Sobey
Owner of Generation Green at The Forks

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Student Day for Culture Days Manitoba

There is no telling what you will experience at The Forks this year for Culture Days Manitoba. This year's annual Student Day at the Forks, which falls on Friday, September 27th will host over 500 students and counting from all over Winnipeg. Students from Grades 1- 12 will attend The Forks to take part in the inaugural weekend of free, interactive and participatory arts and cultural events that make up Culture Days Manitoba.

Students will have the opportunity to listen to music and watch performances all day long underneath the canopy. Returning acts like the Shaftesbury Jazz Band and the Gabrielle Roy School Band will bring a sense of familiarity to the event, while the Saint John Brebeuf Choir is a welcome addition. The charming sounds of El Sistema Orchestra, directed by elementary students from 7 Oaks School Division will be sure to warm your heart on an autumn day. Performances under the canopy are not restricted to music. In fact, this year we have three dance performances all displaying a variety of cultural backgrounds which represents the mosaic of cultures here in Winnipeg. Delight in performances by the Ensemble Folklorique de la Rivière Rouge, Maples Collegiate Bhangra Dance Group and Maples Collegiate Filipino Mabuhay Dance Ensemble. Cap off the performances with an all out fiddle fest and public jig with music by students from Music for All Alliance.

As the music plays, wander into The Forks Market for great activities and information. If you're hungry, head over The Forks demonstration kitchen where the North End Food Security will be cooking up 3 sisters stew and teaching you how to make it too! Stick around for a free sample and information about how to make a great meal. For dessert, browse through the Manitoba Honey Festival which will be displaying the products of proud Manitoba honey producers. After you've filled your belly, head over to Film Training Manitoba for an interactive directing workshop with skilled instructors. Freeze Frame Media Arts Centre will also hosting collage and animation workshops to contribute to your cinematic streak.

If you're interested in how to improve your language skills, take in some information about Spanish Immersion programs and then learn about Fair Trade products at the Fair Trade Manitoba Booth. But if all this exhausts you and you just want to create something special for the winter months, join in the RAM Wools Knitting Circle. They will teach you how to knit and show you how to make those winter mitts you've always wanted. Still working with your hands, head over to the Maples Collegiate Asian Heritage Club Arts and Crafts stand. There you can make traditional lanterns and other crafts to decorate your home.

If you're going green, or environmental that is, visit Generation Green and help celebrate their one year anniversary! Green Action Centre will be hosting a bike blender activity (you bike and your motion blends your food!) and other environmental activities. If you are so excited by these great and just need to run around, sign up for the K.I.D.S Soccer Workshop and learn about the unifying spirit of sport. To cool down, find calm in guided Qiqong sessions with instructor Kelly Whelan-Enns.

In the end, you can lounge in the Warming Huts, or take in the Cool Gardens installations. You might like to watch blacksmith Matt Jenkins create incredible designs with a traditional technique, or you might want to learn from and contribute to chalk artist Shawn Fedora's chalk art outside The Forks Market. You might find Graffiti Gallery's Art Mash Up in the Skate Park is more your style, with live art and DJing all afternoon.

Whatever your taste, it's clear that there is something for everyone at this year's Student Day at The Forks. We look forward to seeing you there on Friday, September 27th from 10:00am- 2:30pm.

Michelle RosnerCommunications and Events Coordinator 
MB Culture Days 

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Thin Air Writers Festival

Whether  in books or movies or check-out line conversations, stories are our  stock-in-trade, the way we humans connect with one another and  understand ourselves.

Writers continue to create wonderful  stories, and that’s our reason for being at THIN AIR. This September, we  roll out our seventeenth edition. We’ve got writers of wild  imagination, probing intellect, keen wit, and refreshing verbal  dexterity. It’s going to be an exciting, and full, week.

From  Monday to Friday, September 23-27, the spotlight shines on a host of  writers at the Manitoba Theatre for Young People at The Forks. You can  hear the readings, have the writer sign the copy of the book you just  bought during the intermission (we’ve got books for sale right on the  stage), and even enjoy a glass of wine (we’ll even have a bar on stage,  too).

It’s hard to talk about highlights when there’s so much  great stuff going on, but one of the standouts has got to be Andrew  Pyper, who’ll be reading Friday night. Andrew is a terrifically good  writer who writes really scary books. His latest, The Demonologist,  is already a bestseller and has picked up rave reviews. It’s a  suspenseful, frightening tale of very real devils, of demons who walk  among us, and the evil that human beings can inflict. It’ll have you  checking over your shoulder.

On the other side of the emotional spectrum, we have Cassie Stocks on Tuesday night. Her book, Dance, Gladys, Dance,  has something otherworldy too, but it aims to make you laugh. Cassie’s  got an interesting backstory. After doing a variety of jobs (actor,  aircraft cleaner, hydroponic pot factory caretaker), she ended up taking  a degree in Professional Writing. She won a fiction writing contest and  before you know it, she picked up the Stephen Leacock Memorial Medal  for Humour for her first novel: we call it DGD around the office.  Anyway, Gladys happens to be a ghost, which complicates things.

All  the Mainstage events are arranged around some creative theme, one  devised by Festival Director Charlene Diehl. So, Monday night is called  “Dancing Lessons.”  Charlene quotes the late, great George Carlin, who  said that “Those who dance are considered insane by those who cannot  hear the music.” Keep that in mind when you hear our team of writers  read about stories that show how art, travel, families, and movies can  be a source of solace or a means of escape.

It’s a great line-up, but you’ll really want to check out Andrew Steinmetz.  His book, This Great Escape: The Case of Michael Paryla,  is an inventive family memoir about his cousin who escaped the Nazis,  growing up in Canada, before returning to Germany to work as an actor,  including a bit part in the Steve McQueen war movie “The Great Escape.”  You’ll probably never come across another book quite like it.

And  Thursday night has local treasures Shawna Dempsey and Lorri Millan.  Performance artists as well as writers, they’re here with their book Bedtime Stories for the Edge of the World,  a collection of rambunctious, ripping yarns. Definitely not for  children, but if you listen in, you’ll learn a thing or two. And  Wednesday is our annual Poetry Bash, this year featuring the return of  former Winnipeg Jon Paul Fiorentino. If you've never heard him read,  he'll shake up your idea of what a poetry reading can be.

Tickets  are $12 ($10 for students and seniors). There’s also a Festival Pass  for $40. You can find all the details at our website  ( or in our nifty paperback which you can find  all over the place, including The Forks. (The festival has got events  all around town, too.)

Bruce Symaka, Audience Development Coordinator Winnipeg International Writers Festival

Thursday, 5 September 2013

Target Zero Eco Kids Tour presented by MMSM

This week's blog post is brought to you by Daina Letoid of Green Kids Inc.  She is one of the talented actors and tour guides that takes kids through the Target Zero Eco Kids Tour at The Forks presented by MMSM.  The tour is geared toward kindergarten to grade six classes and is an excellent way to get your kids out of the classroom for some hands on, environmental learning.  Thanks for providing us with the post, Daina!

Green Kids Inc. is very excited to lauch Season 2 of the Target Zero Eco Kids Tours of The Forks, presented by MMSM.  Throughout the 2012-2013 school year, we had the opportunity to lead over a dozen school groups through and around The Forks, in every kind of weather imaginable.  And it was great! 

Students, teachers and parent volunteers experienced first-hand earth-friendly initiatives like composting, bio diesel and geothermal temperature control.  But that's not all, because these tours are interactive, and dramatic!  Participants dramatized scientific concepts and natural phenomenon.  They also had the opportunity to explore the roles of people - both protecting and harming - our environment.  Groups celebrated the great things they already do for our planet, and then pledged what more they will do.

Students, teachers and parents leaving the Target Zero Tours were inspired to create positive change, both at their schools, and in their homes.  Inspiration is catchy!  We look forward to working with more school groups this season!        

Tours are FREE and can be booked by email - or phone - 204-987-4378.  For more information on the Target Zero Eco Kids Tour presented by MMSM, please visit