vol 5, no 3 - autumn 2023
Download vol. 5, no. 3 - autumn 2023
Welcome to Autumn 2023. We are looking ahead to this time of transition, the shoulder season between summer’s bounty and winter’s time of reflection.
We continue to face significant challenges here in Owen Sound and throughout Grey-Bruce. Each day seems to bring a new tsunami of issues and events large and small for us to endure. Susan Estabrooks, owner of London’s excellent Mandala Book Shop, recently passed along this quote from Octavia Reheem’s book Pause, Rest Be: “There is no way to apply existing logic here. There is no sense or meaning to make. There is no normal to idealize and place on a pedestal. There is only the ground you are sitting on and even that feels like it is crumbling. Sink into the ground. You are a seed.”
To that end, I hope we’ve given you some clues on these pages on ways to to move forward with intention and hope. We’re not just rebuilding our community; we need to establish new ways to connect and be. We live in such a creative and beautiful region: there’s so much local opportunity to make music and hear music; see live theatre; write your own and enjoy others’ poetry and fiction; make art and enjoy art; hike, swim, boat, walk, and run in nature; and more. Take a class at GBArts or Intersections; enjoy a great meal at one of our excellent independent restaurants; and definitely take part in the Wellness Walkabout: a celebration of health and wellness in downtown Owen Sound. And, to get you started check out our Heritage Downtown Walking tour. Remember, or learn.
vol 5, no 2 - summer 2023
Download vol. 5, no. 2 - summer 2023
Welcome to Summer 2023! It’s wonderful to see so many re-openings as we stretch ourselves into this wonderful season of music, and art, and nature, and gardens, and hikes, and so much more. My best advice to you is to get your daytimer out right now, before you start reading, and be prepared to fill it up with a multitude of remarkable community events happening right here, right now. In this issue you will learn about local festivals, studio tours and art exhibitions, theatre, a starfest, classes, teardropping, barn building, and (drum roll please) free weekend bus rides to Sauble!
We’ve squeezed as much as we can into this issue; inevitably we wanted to tell you more about some things, but there just wasn’t room. So, briefly, visit
choircamp.wordpress.com for details on Choir Camp 2023 (July 10-14), contact www.twigandbrindille.ca for the most amazing bouquets of grown-right-here flowers, and register now at wordsaloud.ca for the amazing Words Aloud Poetry Festival happening this fall. And have a great summer re-connecting with old favourite haunts and discovering some new ones! vol 5, no 1 - winter 2023
Download vol. 5, no. 1 - spring 2023
Welcome back! This is such a great time of year as we emerge from the winter hibernation into the enthusiasms of spring. And Grey-Bruce is bursting out all over. There’s so much going on!
In this issue of our combined MOSAIC/TheOwenSounder magazine, we cover lots of new books, new events, and new services, along with some pre-COVID happenings which are resurfacing as we get back to getting together.
Find out about the Kemble Maple Tour on April 1st stops at six maple producers; as well it includes a maple-forward meal. You can get outdoors with folks who know what you’re seeing by volunteering with the Sydenham Bruce Trail Club as they clean up old trails and build new ones. Register now for this summer’s Choir Camp, and help build a boat with Intersections. If you’re more of a homebody, you can check out the 27 on-demand music performances at the all-new Heartwood TV station. Get political! Join the Wonderland Choir! Head to downtown Owen Sound for Mother’s Day! Take a class at Georgian Bay School of the Arts! Or Upwards Art Studio! Or Inter- sections! So many opportunities to connect!
We are delighted to include the Junior and Senior winners of the Write @ Your Library writing contest on pages 16 and 17 in this issue. Open to students throughout Grey-Bruce, this is the biggest and longest running local local creative writing contest for youth. With over 50 entries of short stories and poems, the jury was challenged to choose the best overall. And here they are! Congratulations to Aria Thomas and Mady Raney (Junior winners) and Amelia Sutter and Teagan Penner (Senior winners). And good luck to everyone working on their submissions for this year’s contest. Write On!
Tickets are now available for an Evening with Dan Needles on April 1st. Dan is a wonderful speaker, who provides a rustic philo- sophical approach to his experiences as a newby farmer living rurally. “Why can’t sheep and trees be friends?” he asks as he threads together his love of all things local with all things trees in this fundraiser for Intersections Wood Collaborative. The evening will also include silent and live auctions of beautifully made objects by Stephen Hogbin, Ruth Gowdy McKinley, Kayo O’Kayo, Donald Lloyd MdKinley, and other outstanding Canadian artists, along with refreshments and a cash bar. Don’t miss this great event!
AND we are bringing back WORDSHOP, a one-day learning opportunity for writers co-sponsored by the Owen Sound & North Grey Union Public Library (OSNGUPL) and The Ginger Press on Sunday, April 16 at The Library. The lineup of local experts leading sessions is phenomenal! Topics covered include Community Sto- rytelling with Joan Beecroft; Making Books with Kari Bronough; Writing Songs with Coco Love; Writing Your Memoir with Gail Gallant; How to Research with Janet Iles; Writing for Magazines with Sandra J. Howe; Writing and Illustrating Books for Children with Elly MacKay; Everything You Need to Know About Copyright with Miranda Miller; Writing Poetry with Richard-Yves Sitoski; and Writing Fiction and Non-fiction with Richard Thomas. Register now ($95; includes lunch and four sessions + so much more) online at https://www.osngupl.ca/wordshop or in person at OSNGUPL, 824 1st Avenue West in Owen Sound. See you soon!
vol 4, no 4 - winter 2022
Download vol. 4, no. 4 - winter 2022
Welcome to another issue of our combined community magazine. MOSAIC and The Owen Sounder seem to have developed some kind of relationship. As with most relationships, I have no idea how long it will last or what it might look like in the future. But, for right now, the match-up seems to be working and that’s a good thing. Print is alive and well at The Ginger Press! We are committed to words on paper.
To that end, I am very pleased to announce our 37th Annual Authors’ Open House! Who would’ve thought, all those decades ago, that such a simple idea would hold such resonance for our community. Bringing together authors and readers makes such sense and, each year, dozens of writers honour us with their presence. The 2022 Authors’ Open House will include many of our regulars: you know them well – Barry More, Joan Beecroft, Bonita Johnson de Matteis, Richard-Yves Sitoski, Richard Thomas, and Eric Zweig – as well as some newbies including Gwen Harris, Kate Russell and Ansley Simpson. We don’t have the definitive list of authors at time of publication but I assure you there will an amazing selection of writers of books for all the children, adults, and everybody in between on your gift list. And books are so easy to wrap!
I also have four more manuscripts in my computer awaiting publication. I’m keeping them a secret for now, but there may well be some new books launched at the Open House as well! Speaking of new books, did you know that we now have a nifty online course to help you self-publish yours? It was developed to answer all those questions from all those writers who stop by to learn more about how they can propel their manuscripts into finished books. The link is at
www.gingerpress.com; check it out if you’re looking for a winter project and you’re ready to move your great Canadian novel forward.
Thank you as always for taking the time to read MOSAIC/The Owen Sounder. We live in such a remarkable community and it is an honour for me to gather together some of its uniqueness for you all. Thank you also to Shelley Jackson, whose remarkable design skills shine from these pages. She is the miracle worker who takes all the bits and pieces that make up the magazine, and ties them together with such skill. And of course, thanks are extended to our advertisers who, once again, have made this publication possible. Please support them, and tell them thanks for supporting us.
I wish you the very best of the holiday season and look forward to seeing you soon!
vol 4, no 3 - fall 2022
Download vol. 4, no. 3 - fall 2022
Oh my. There’s a lot going on around Grey Bruce! Welcome to another combined issue of MOSAIC and The Owen Sounder. With an increased print run, this very local magazine continues to provide residents and visitors with another perspective on our community. And we’re delighted to welcome new contributors, advertisers, and readers to our pages.
Our first ever Wellness Walkabout is a collaboration among nine health and wellness businesses located in downtown Owen Sound. On September 24, they will all open their doors to show you what they’re up to, and answer all your questions about their products and services. There’s no charge to attend the Wellness Walkabout, and parking is free all day!
The Glassworks Cooperative Housing and Eco-village is having a BBQ on their 46-acre lot, and you’re invited. They want to show you their plans to convert this vacant land into a remarkable place to live and work. And they want you to get involved with this innovative project.
Local artist Stephen Hogbin passed away earlier this year. Friends and family have come together to organize a celebration of his life and work on September 17-18. Visit installations of his work throughout Owen Sound, and an exhibition of his pieces at Grey Gallery. As well, there will be an event featuring short films and reflections at The Library.
The Harmony Centre is a thriving hub for sharing, creating, educating, and performing. Ten years ago it was an empty church. With an investment of over $1 million in improvements, the building has been re-purposed for the community into a remarkable space available for almost anything you can imagine. This fall it will host a series of concerts. We’re also choosing to have our Greek Dinner there to celebrate the publication of Lili Anne Holding’s two-volume history of the Greeks in Owen Sound.
And then there’s the transformation of the old Bingo Hall into the Georgian Bay Centre for the Arts. This vibrant well-equipped space now hosts classes in almost every art-form you can imagine for beginning and experienced artists of all ages.
There’s so much to see and do around here. Read all about it in these pages, and then get out there and get involved. Speaking of involvement, don’t forget to vote in the upcoming municipal election. However your community has chosen to organize its election day, there are lots of ways to get involved with democracy. And, now more than ever, our elected officials need to know what we think is important in our community. So examine your options. And make your choices known.
Thanks for joining us here in MOSAIC + The Owen Sounder. I sincerely hope you will enjoy some (or all) of what’s on offer here. And do me a favour: tell folks you learned about their events, products and services right here on these pages. Don’t be a stranger!
vol 4, no 2 - summer 2022
Download vol. 4, no. 2 - summer 2022
Welcome to summer! No, really, let’s do it! Here at The Ginger Press, we are revelling in the enthusiasm of so many local tenacious event organizers and entrepreneurs who are ready to move beyond the challenges presented by these times. Music! Art! Books! Nature Trails! Open Waters! Did I mention Books!? There’s so much going on.
Downtown Owen Sound will once again be the place for ArtWalk. Ten venues will welcome you to visit their galleries, studios and shops from 10 to 4 on Saturday June 25. There will be special demonstra- tions, workshops, exhibitions, and tours. The event is free – even the parking is free on ArtWalk day! And there will be painters painting outdoors throughout the downtown. C’mon down.
Speaking of painting outdoors, the Saugeen Artists’ Guild has organized the first Plein Air Festival to take place throughout the Saugeen watershed July 20 to 24. Be an artist; observe the artists; attend the art exhibition; and discover more of the remarkable area in which we live and visit.
And the music! Summerfolk 47 has an amazing lineup of spectacular performers, artists, and food purveyors. I’ll definitely see you there; Irish Mythen and Connie Kaldor are both on my must-see list. But it’s those magical Summerfolk moments that happen between the lines that make the best memories.
Finish the summer off at the 25th Annual Walter’s Falls Art Show on August 26-28, featuring compelling works by local artists. Find the Walter’s Falls Community Centre (there will be signs to help; although Walter’s Falls is small, it is renowned for its maze of roads) and enjoy meeting the artists and their art.
And, who can resist the invitation to take up lawn bowling? Since 1920, the Owen Sound Roselawn Bowling Club has been the place to go to enjoy beautiful evenings, outside, playing a deceptively simple and not-too-strenuous game while meeting new friends and getting to know our community better. There’s a coupon in this issue for two free evenings of lawn bowling. Let’s try it this summer, k?
Phew. All in all, it’s going to be a great summer. And we’ve packed as many clues to happiness as we could fit into this exuberant combo issue of MOSAIC and The Owen Sounder. I’ll see you on the beaches and the trails; in the galleries and shops; eating around; and – c’mon you know you want to try it – on the bowling lawns.
vol 4, no 1 - spring 2022
Download vol. 4, no. 1 - spring 2022
“Spring is the promise that winter can’t keep.” At least, I think that’s what local poet Paul Scott wrote so many years ago. I can’t find his original note, and Paul is no longer here to ask. He would always bring me a blooming bouquet of his daffodils as soon as they appeared. And he left me with an elusive memory of a line from a poem that returns to me every spring. Have I remembered it correctly? Who knows? (If you know, please tell me!)
It’s been a rough winter. Our community is reeling from the loss of our beloved librarian, Andrew Armitage. His commitment to our local history reshaped how we think about Owen Sound and Grey-Bruce. Andrew found our history buried in the library stacks of old books; he resurrected our stories and gave them back to us, embellished with his wonder and wit. His commitment to local authors was inspirational and essential to our understanding of our community today.
In recognition of his work supporting local authors, the library is accepting donations in memory of Andrew Armitage. Cheques should be made to Owen Sound & North Grey Union Public Library with “Andrew Armitage Collection” in the memo line. Funds raised will be used to build the Andrew Armitage Grey Bruce Authors Collection of Resources.
Five years ago, Stephen Hogbin bought Leigh Greaves’ stained glass studio in downtown Owen Sound. He created Intersections WOOD Gallery & Studio, a remarkable addition to the cultural fabric of our community. Not only did the new space house his own studio, it also hosted workshops, lectures, artists-in-residence, and the largest selection of books about wood and woodworking in the universe. Earlier this year, Stephen passed away, but not before he was able to build the framework of a new entity: Intersections Wood Collabora- tive is now a registered non-profit run by volunteers committed to Stephen’s legacy. Classes are starting up again (see pg 21) and there are plans to expand every aspect of Intersections with workshops, collaborative projects, discussion groups and speakers’ events, and so much more.
In Stephen’s memory, donations may be made by cheque to the Intersections Wood Collaborative, c/o Box 217 Tara, Ontario, N0H 2N0, to continue the legacy of Intersections; and by cheque to the scholarship fund for students working in wood, c/o Community Foundation Grey Bruce, Box 81, Owen Sound, Ontario, N4K 5P1, with “Stephen Hogbin Award” on the memo line.
On a personal note, I miss Stephen and Andrew deeply and am very grateful for the support they gave me and The Ginger Press for the last several decades. And, as we celebrate the arrival of spring, we also celebrate all the contributions that have become part of the changing seasons here.
Download vol. 3, no. 4 - winter 2021
It may not be the usual venue, but we’re just going to do it this year. That’s right, the 36th Annual Authors’ Open House is really happening. On December 11, from 11:00 to 3:00, we’ll be invading Heartwood Hall, just up the street from The Ginger Press. Over a dozen famous local authors will be on hand to talk about their projects and sign copies of their books for everyone on your gift list. Who could ask for anything more? Well, I know, we all want to return home to the bookshop, but for this year, I think it’ll be great to get together at Heartwood, in a socially-distanced, double-vaxxed kind of way. If you can’t make it up those stairs, just give me a call at (519) 376-4233 and I’ll get your books autographed for you and have them ready for pickup at the store.
Our authors this year will include: Joan Beecroft, Dana Benson, Donna Jansen (A Place to Belong: Stories from Newcomers); John Butler (House of Refuge); John Fearnall (Leith); Lili Anne Holding (Mythos: Owen Sound’s Greek Community 1912-1932) Larry Jensen (These Streets I Know: Book + CD); Bonita Johnson de Matteis (Black Eyed Peas and Races: The Emancipation Picnic); Marie Knapp (Path to a More Inspiring Future); Barry More (A Thing of Beauty: The Story of Morland Place); Rob Rolfe (Sturgeon Bay: Poems); Richard-Yves Sitoski (No Sleep ’Til Eden: Poems); Richard Thomas (History of Owen Sound: 1840-1939 - in 3 volumes); Brad Wilcox (Too Far Back in the Bush: Meaford Knights Hockey Team); and Eric Zweig (Hockey Hall of Fame Heroes).
Heartwood Hall is located on the 2nd floor at 939 2nd Avenue East, in downtown Owen Sound. All COVID protocols will be in place for this special event. Although The Ginger Press will be closed on December 11 for the Authors’ Open House, we will be open at the bookshop throughout the rest of the festive season. Book your holidays with us!
Download vol. 3, no. 3 - fall 2021
Everything this fall is coming up books! It’s time to move away from your screens and celebrate the possibilities that exist in words on paper. The Ginger Press is launching a record-setting four books this month. We are also supporting a couple of additional book launches from other publishers. We will be practising COVID protocols at all events, so don’t forget your mask and please stay home if you’re not well. It’s so exciting to have these events and we want everyone to be safe. Read on!
On Saturday September 18 at 2:00pm, at Heartwood Hall in downtown Owen Sound, we will host The Great Big Fat Greek Book Launch. Author Lili Anne Holding has written Mythos: The Story of Owen Sound’s Greek Community 1912-1932. She’s also making baklava for the launch! Mythos tells the story of the arrival and settlement of the author’s family in Owen Sound (Lili Anne is the daughter of Earl Georgas). Lili Anne is a graduate of our recent Publishing Accelerator course. Autographed copies of Mythos ($30) can be reserved at (519) 376-4233.
On Sunday September 19 at 2:00pm at the picnic pavilion in Harrison Park, we will host the launch of A Place to Belong: Stories from Newcomers to Grey and Bruce. Nineteen stories from recent newcomers have been collected by Joan Beecroft, Dana Benson, and Donna Jansen. Copies of A Place to Belong ($24.95) can be reserved at (519) 376-4233.
The Flesherton Library will host the launch of House of Refuge: Grey County’s Home for “Poor, Old and Friendless Folk” chronicled by Frederick Gee from 1904 to 1907, and collected by John Butler. The House of Refuge was built in 1904 on the site of what is now Markdale’s Grey Gables. John Butler has transcribed newspaper columns written over 100 years ago, to provide a fascinating look at the lives and conditions of residents and staff. Copies of House of Refuge ($30) are also available at The Ginger Press. Contact email@example.com for details of this Library fundraising event. POSTPONED
On Thursday September 30 at 7:00pm The Ginger Press will launch Sturgeon Bay, the latest collection of poems from Rob Rolfe. Copies of Sturgeon Bay ($24.95) are available at The Ginger Press. POSTPONED On Wednesday September 29 at 11:00am, Bruce Grey Child and Family Services will host a Zoom presentation of Jigging for Halibut with Tsinii’ with author Sara Davidson. Details on pg 5.
On Saturday October 30 at 2:00pm at Jest Arts in Durham, Jenny Parsons will launch her self-published novel Higgsfield Follies. There will be ice cream and a brass-and-drum band! Jenny is a graduate of our recent Publishing Accelerator course.
And that’s a whole lotta new books! What a wonderful range of subjects from a remarkable range of authors. I hope you will be able to join us at all the launches to learn more about the books and meet the authors. And, of course, I hope you will want to add all these books to your own book shelves!
Download vol. 2, no. 4 - summer 2021
Phew! We made it! Preparing this issue of The Owen Sounder was fraught with the challenges of changing and confusing and sometimes counter-intuitive local, provincial, national and international COVID-19 protocols: Open? Closed? Open a little bit? Take-out? Eat outside? Pickup? Family bubbles? Work bubbles? Groups of five? Groups of ten? You know the dance!
We are delighted this issue to be introducing you to COVID cartoonist Rachel Oliver, who has been producing a cartoon every single day since March, 2020. Her acerbic wit highlights much of what we’re all experiencing. See page 19 to get your name on her distribution list.
We sincerely congratulate Summerfolk and Symphony in the Barn and SweetWater and Orchestra North and all the other organizers for tenaciously moving forward with their annual summer programs. We all need their music more than ever, and they’re working hard to make it happen someway, somehow. There’s not a lot of programming details here due to changing protocols, but we’ve provided contact information for you. Get in touch and give them all your support – financial and audience – to make sure they’re here for us in years to come.
AND, we’ve taken the huge plunge and brought back the award-winning downtown event ArtWalk! Eight galleries will have special exhibitions and demonstrations from 10 to 4 on Saturday June 26. We’ve added the Urban Sketchers Outdoor Art Competition – artists will be painting outdoors during the day (rain or shine) throughout the downtown. Programming details will be posted as they become available at the art walk urban sketchers page on Facebook.
Download vol. 3, no. 1 - spring 2021
At the time of writing, we’ve transitioned into the Yellow Zone, making it a little easier to go about our daily lives. Who knows what the future holds? Here at The Ginger Press, we continue to reinvent ourselves on a regular (daily?) basis. The bookshop and cafe are open Thursday to Saturday from 10 til 2, and our website is open 24/7 for your online orders.
There was a nanosecond back in January when I really didn’t know what to do next. So, in conjunction with Miranda Miller of Grey Bruce Digital, we invented a retreat: The GP Publishing Accelerator (details on page 9).
“What is it?” you might ask. Well, an accelerator gives you access to the skills, mentorship and other supports you need. It’s intensive. And The GP Publishing Accelerator is in response to all those inquiries I have received over the years about publishing. After taking this course, you will know everything you need to know to publish your book. There will be a month of online sessions leading up to the retreat weekend (May 14-16), which will take place at the all-new Port Elgin Holiday Inn Express & Suites. There will also be a follow-up session upon completion. You will learn from two local experts who have spent decades gathering the information you need to move forward with your project. So, don’t be disappointed – yes, class size is limited to ensure the best experience for you – register today!
AND, it’s time to take a hike! We’ve included a portion of the Owen Sound trails map brochure in our centrefold this issue. If you’re ready to go a bit further afield, I recommend Ron Savage’s excellent book Secrets of Sydenham ($20) with 30 local hikes and explorations. Ron has also written a lovely little book on the Silent Valley Nature Reserve ($15) – “a stunning jewel in a beautiful necklace” – which is located just outside Owen Sound, and Sydenham End to End ($20) which has tales about this section of the Bruce Trail. Nicola Ross has just released Collingwood, the Blue Mountains and Beaver Valley Hikes ($29.95) which has 35 loop routes, “as well as oodles of apres-hiking suggestions.” And then, of course, there’s the old standby: The Bruce Trail Guide ($39.95) is now in its 30th edition; it details hikes from Niagara Falls to Tobermory. I’ll see you on the trails!
Download vol. 2, no. 2 - winter 2020
This Owen Sounder has lots of things to do and places to go. Our stores, restaurants, services and events are adapting, altering, replacing, and reinventing constantly as we move forward with tenacity. Owen Sounders have grabbed opportunities buried in the depths of this pandemic and brought forth new ways of living and working and doing business we couldn’t have dreamed of a year ago. Yay, us!
Here at The Ginger Press, we have published more books this year than ever. The Café has temporarily transitioned into the Supper Club, and the Bookshop has reduced hours but more online ordering. What does the future hold? Who knows? But we will continue to move forward. And, okay, sometimes I make mistakes. In our last issue, I referred to the Musical Director of SweetWater as Richard Huizinga. Of course, his first name is Edwin. What was I thinking? Sorry about that, Edwin, and congrats to SweetWater for their excellent programming as part of SweetWater Surreal.
You know the drill: wash your hands; wear a mask; keep six feet apart; stay safe. But remember to reach out to friends and family, read books, write books, learn new skills, cook something different, and get outside. We will make lots of new holiday traditions this year; be sure to remind yourself of this remarkable place we live in and make this the best season you can for yourself and others.
Thank you for reading and supporting The Owen Sounder. We’ll be back in the spring (deadline for ads and articles is February 18).
In the meantime, don’t be a stranger!
Download vol. 2, no. 1 - autumn 2020
Welcome (back) to The Owen Sounder. In the early 1990s, The Ginger Press published a magazine which captured those times. When other projects intervened, we set The Owen Sounder aside, but not forever. Today, in the midst of the Covid crisis, it seems absolutely appropriate to bring The Owen Sounder back. It’s perfect for these times too. Delivered by Canada Post to every household and business in the City, The Owen Sounder is now expanded in grand and glorious colour.
As with all the other books and magazines published by The Ginger Press, the content of The Owen Sounder is 100% local. Articles and images by a wide range of Owen Sound experts explore what’s happening right here, right now, from labyrinths to music to the arts and gardens and more. And we can provide this to you at no charge because of the support of our advertisers, who are, not surprisingly, local too.
I hope you enjoy this new incarnation of The Owen Sounder. The plan is to make it a quarterly publication. If you would like to get involved, please get in touch. And don’t forget to tell our advertisers that “you saw it in The Owen Sounder.”