Creston Valley Advance publisher Lorne Eckersley is library’s next living book

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The Creston Valley Public Library is pleased to present Creston Valley Advance publisher Lorne Eckersley at its next Living Book event at 1:30 p.m. May 10.

Eckersley’s love of newspapers dates back to his elementary school years when he sat at the kitchen table, eating cinnamon toast and reading the Calgary Albertan each morning. He wrote his first column in his Grade 7 class newspaper, a celebratory look at the 1967 Stanley Cup champions, his beloved Toronto Maple Leafs. In his late teens he edited his community’s monthly newspaper, the Bowmont News.

After completing a two-year journalism program at the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology, Eckersley arrived in Creston in 1979 to take his first paying newspaper job at the Advance.

“I’ll stay for five years,” he told owners Bill and Sue Betcher.

After a year as sports editor, photographer and reporter, he took on the position as advertising manager. In his 35-year association with the Advance, he has written about 2,000 columns, 1,300 of them under the This is the Life title. He has also written columns on sports, wine and entertainment. His favourite title? A video movie review column he called The Illage Videot.

In his Living Book presentation, Eckersley focuses on the role of opinion columns in newspapers and talks about some of his favourites.

“I don’t write editorials, I write columns,” he says. “An editorial expresses the opinion of the newspaper, a column reflects the opinion of its author. The newspaper I publish doesn’t have opinions, but I do. Lots of them!”

The Creston library’s Living Books speaker series is a way for community members to learn from each other. Living “books” are real people, your friends and neighbours, volunteering to share aspects of their own “story”. Through living books the library seeks to encourage the sharing of knowledge and passion between people. Each month, the library hosts a get-together where a member of your community shares their personal experiences. Topics are varied, from art to travel to local history to coping with loss, and everything in between. Attendees of the speaker series learn more about the people in their community and their diverse backgrounds and expertise.

All are welcome to hear Eckersley’s presentation on Saturday at the Creston Valley Public Library. For more information, call 250-428-4141.

—CRESTON VALLEY PUBLIC LIBRARY