From the Publisher July/August 2017


(To view our July/August 2017 issue of ClubWEST online, click here.)

“Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.”
– Benjamin Franklin

In my line of work – on a daily basis – calls, email, and drop-ins at the office are received, many of which start with, “have I got a story for you”.

Such was the case when shooting photos weeks ago for Lincoln Garden Club’s plant sale in Vineland.

Louise Marykuca tugged on my arm as I walked by and said, ‘If you’re looking for a story, you might want to talk to my husband. He makes his own bows and is quite accomplished.”

My first thought was “bow ties?”. Little did I know….Thinking it through and listening to her story, it sounded like a neat little feature, so I put it in motion.

Then when I read the story which Joanne McDonald came back with, the feature took on a life of its own.

That is a great read!

Bill Marykuca really is a gifted man. Few people can build a major going concerned from their garage, but he did it with Red-D-Arc. Few people have a natural talent for craftsmanship, too, but Bill explored the world of violin and bow making in 2000. Sure enough, that hobby took off and he quickly became renowned for his creations.

At the other end of the spectrum, we have Samara Vandersloot. She is just getting started. At 18, she has been to Nunavut, she is working on modelling and, in the meantime, she is taking part in Junior Team Canada’s trade mission to China this summer.

I don’t know about you, good reader, but I was more worried about my weekends when I was 18 than career establishment.

Maybe when Samara is ready to travel for leisure she may call ClubWest’s new travel writer, Lorraine Simpson.

As a former resident and merchant on Main Street in Jordan for many years, Lorraine is keenly aware of the interests of Niagara West residents as well as the tourist set. Her experience in world travel is second to none and Clubwest readers will see – first-hand – some unique and off-the-beaten path locations to which they may choose to visit in the near future. Her stories will inspire the lengthening of bucket lists across Niagara West you can be assured!

And with this edition, ClubWest wraps up its third full year of publishing.

A ton has materialized and changed in three years including the popularity of this publication. It is great to see voracious readers lined up in the office to get it on the day it comes out – in case they aren’t among the 15,000 who get it at home. We love doing it and we’re glad our readers love it right back.

Publisher, ClubWest Magazine
Mike Williscraft

From the Publisher May/June 2017


(To view our May/June 2017 issue of ClubWEST online, click here.)

“Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.”
– Benjamin Franklin

Magazines, unlike their industry sisters, newspapers, can often have themes which harmonize pages from cover to cover.

This edition of ClubWest does not follow that scheme in the slightest. In fact, it is probably about as diverse as could be conjured from the topics in Niagara West.

What can be said about the Coutts that has not already been said. Simply lovely people who have as dedicated a passion forhistory and their Nelles Manor as they possess for the Town of Grimsby itself. Absolutely deserving of their Grimsby & District Chamber of Commerce honour. Good on the Chamber for recognizing them as well as Junior Citizen Neha Gulati.

While the Coutts feature drips of history and interesting story lines, Diala Canelo is at the opposite end of the feature spectrum – working mom travelling the world as a flight attendant, who happens to a highly trained foodie.

She has managed to combine those two areas of interest to become a bit of an internet sensation who is about to parlay years of groundwork into a cookbook.

For an interesting twist on top of all that, the author of that piece, Isabella Gilmore, just happens to be Diala’s daughter.

Isabella will be working with me for the next few months and will continue with her post-GSS studies at Sheridan College’s journalism program this fall. She offers an excellent first piece and her mom should be very proud.

Down the middle of these two polar opposites, you have the Dunns who, after nearly three decades on Grimsby’s Main Street plying their trade in the jewellery business have opted to retire. In speaking with Rob and Pat last month it is clear they still have the passion, but the timing was right, and good for them.

It was interesting to hear them relate the transitions in their industry which have emerged over their careers: supply chain dwindling, technology, sales habits and more.

Their comment about consumers having less interest in quality in favour of lower prices is a universal cry of most craftsmen who are finding the going significantly more difficult. If the 90s were considered the start of a disposable society, today that atmosphere has exponentially grown.

Toss in a little fishing expertise from Brent Bochek – along with a little culinary spice from chef Jan-Willem Stulp and we have another successful recipe for and excellent read covering all things homegrown right here in Niagara West. Enjoy!

Publisher, ClubWest Magazine
Mike Williscraft

From the Publisher March/April 2017


(To view our March/April 2017 issue of ClubWEST online, click here.)

“Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.”
– Benjamin Franklin

This edition is dominated by two very different champions.

While they both have performed right at the top of two very different sports, they both have similarities.

Key among those championship traits is heart.

You can’t coach that into a person and you cannot train it into a race horse.

Tonya Verbeek, a self-described technician of wrestling, showed time and time again during her illustrious career that her undying will to win helped her overcome some excellent quality competition. The result of which placed her on podium after podium around the world.

For Modern Legend, a harness racing millionaire owned by Grimsby’s Dave Drew who has trained out of Vineland all his career, he has managed to remain competitive at the highest levels of harness racing thanks in large part to the patience displayed by Mr. Drew, his owner, breeder, trainer and swimming coach.

In 30-plus years as a journalist, countless stories have been “penned” by this scribe. When it comes to winners, heart may be the only truly common characteristic on any consistent basis.

There are athletes in all disciplines who have unbelievable talent, gifts for which many would die.

Granted, they may do quite well, but intestinal fortitude always puts them over the top. If you follow any sport it is quite likely you can think of several examples.

The whole point of this ClubWest Magazine is to tell the story’s of great things being done right on our own backyard and of things being done by people who are from this area. Tonya’s exploits are known around the globe due to her efforts in competitions all around the world and Modern Legend put Niagara on the map for a North American audience thanks to his racing prowess in Canada and the U.S.

Both are ambassadors in their own way. Both are entering different phases of their careers.

Tonya is now on her way as a Canadian wrestling coach, and good on her! When you work as long and hard as she did, it is great to see someone like that get a break and be able to continue on in a path she clearly relishes.

Modern Legend, now nine years old, is on the back-end of his racing career, but due to Dave’s stewardship he is still in great shape, so he may have a bullet or two left in that racing gun. One thing is certain, both are wished the absolute best in their future endeavours!

Publisher, ClubWest Magazine
Mike Williscraft