Tag Archives: Mike Williscraft

From the Publisher November/December 2017

ClubWest

(To view our November/December 2017 issue of ClubWEST online, click here.)

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

This edition of ClubWest Magazine is very interesting.

That is not a brag. The intent is not to trumpet how awesome we are, the features are or any such thing.

What I want you, good reader, to do is note that none of the other features in this publication would matter one iota if not for the result of the lead feature on Vimy Ridge.

What a different world this would be.

Our economy would not be the same, so who knows what kind of freedoms we would have with agriculture and food.

The cruise highlighted in the this month’s travel feature down the Danube certainly would be different had Canada not stepped up to the plate and turned back the enemy at Vimy.

As for the Sears Wish Book, it is a good guess we might have been wishing the Allies were victorious at Vimy should they have lost that battle.

I will always believe the government did a disservice to all when Remembrance Day was taken away as a stat holiday. No, not because I miss the day off (in the media game no day is a day off, really) but because of the importance of our soldiers’ sacrifice. For that matter, the sacrifice of their family and friends as well. There really is no separation there.

With Vimy, it is very easy to get behind the flag, tell all how awesome Canada is and all that, but remembrance of battles won and lost, the human loss, in the name of freedom is a far larger force deserving of our attention.

Canada, as a nation, has been very lucky in recent years with very little to no military actions on the home front. This makes our soldiers sacrifices even more pronounced as they travel around the globe in the name of freedom and peace to help others.

Taking 30-45 minutes of your time, at some point, and dropping by Grimsby Museum at some point to view the Vimy exhibit – which is on until Friday, Nov. 17 – is well worth your time and would be an excellent conversation with children.

When I was a kid, we got Remembrance Day off. Sure, we met up with friends, goofed around outside and did whatever kids of the day were doing (road hockey, building a fort some place) but if I was not in front of our huge console TV at 11 a.m. to see the Remembrance Day service on CBC broadcast from Ottawa, I would have my own price to pay.

That was not a life decision, but it might have involved a limb or two and I was not going to risk it.

Seriously, check out this exhibit. You will be glad you did.

Publisher, ClubWest Magazine
Mike Williscraft

Drinking It In

ClubWest

(To view our September/October 2017 issue of ClubWEST online, click here.)

The sights, sounds & smells of Italy

By Lorraine Simpson

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The feature image with this article:
A gem in Tuscany, Potentino Castle.

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It’s incredibly difficult not to fall in love with Italy when there is so much incredible history to be explored, food to be savoured and wine to be tasted.

In Rome one can simply not go without visiting the Colosseum from inside or out, posing for a photo with a gladiator, or throwing coins in the trevi fountain…

Rome will inescapably grab you with its charm, history and character. We spent two jam-packed days here on our journey through Rome and Tuscany and would highly recommend getting the skip the line passes when you visit the sites you most want to see. Next we spent a morning in the town just outside of Rome called Frascati. This gem is one of several attractive historic hill-towns to the south-east of Rome known collectively as the Castelli Romani.

Every weekend these towns, and Frascati in particular, fill up with Romans looking for a change of pace, clean air, good food and wine. The wealthy built villas here, many of which are still standing although they’re not open to the public. The most impressive is the Villa Aldobrandini, designed by Giacomo Della Porta for the nephew of a pope. This palace dominates the town, hovering above the central piazza in faded splendour.

We were greeted by Alexander Minardi who is fifth generation winemaker at the Minardi Winery and he took us on a very interesting walking tour of his village before introducing us to some of the local delicacies such as the Porchetta on the wood fired focaccia bread which was to die for! Then we went to his family owned trattoria where we learned “hands on” how to make home made pasta and gnocci. This was such a fun experience in this authentic setting and our host was an Italian grandmother giving us her secrets to pasta making which felt all the more special. The pasta had to dry for an hour or so before eating so we went on a tour of the winery and tasted his wines before returning to eat a delicious antipasti platter followed by the pasta and gnocci we made ourselves with delicious sauces prepared by the chef.

The next day it was time to leave Rome and head for Tuscany.

When you close your eyes and imagine Tuscany, you’re likely to envision rolling, sun-kissed hills dotted with olive trees, grape vines and the occasional farmhouse or villa. It’s a place where time slows and you can savour the rustic, earthy foods and wines that prevail here. As with all regions in Italy, uniquely bold food traditions pervade the area, …

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(To read the full article, please click here to view our September/October 2017 issue of ClubWEST online.)

From the Publisher September/October 2017

ClubWest

(To view our September/October 2017 issue of ClubWEST online, click here.)

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

We all subject our family members and friends to whining.

Even the most level-headed among us break down and succumb to a little self-pitying once in a while. It feels cleansing, somehow.

But if you are in a rut or feel like you need a little boost, I am here to tell you to contact Werner Unger (wunger@cogeco.ca) at the Grimsby/Lincoln Special Olympics and volunteer some time.

Now, one might think it seems peculiar to add an element to what may already be a hectic schedule – that may be part of what has you feeling under pressure – but after one hour of working with these local athletes will clearly show you life is good. Life is what you make it.

When preparing this month’s story to note the steady growth over the 10-year existence of the Grimsby/Lincoln Chapter, I ventured down to Grimsby Secondary School for a photoshoot and series of interviews. Athletes were everywhere across the grounds – after running some sprints as part of warm-up. Some of the participants were quite young, most in their teens, and a couple were adults. No matter their age, they all= had a blast.

This was serious stuff for them and, since the provincial Special Olympics was held in July, some of then fully realize that effort manifests itself in results. Grimsby/Lincoln athletes earned a bunch of medals representing their communities and families very well. Congratulations to all for their efforts there!

As well, the parents and volunteers who make the organization go are deserving of appreciation. As noted in my feature, what started as a handful of athletes now numbers over 90 – very impressive.

Seeing these athletes in their element, working hard and taking great pride in what for many would feel to be a simple achievement, gives one pause to reflect and take stock in what we do have in our everyday lives.

As well in this edition readers will see the storied, 150-year legacy of St. Joe’s Church. Impressive to be sure. As well, for the foodies in the crowd, we have provided a “Best Of ” for Chef Jan Stulp’s “Chef In Residence” feature. Presented in this edition are the most talked about and commented recipes in the nearly three years he has been penning that feature.

Travel writer Lorraine Simpson takes you on a tasty tour of Italy – how could it be otherwise – and Beamsville’s own Brent Bochek highlights the exploits of a recent fishing venture. All in all, a diverse and intriguing effort. Enjoy!

Publisher, ClubWest Magazine
Mike Williscraft