Republic of Poland consul general Krzysztof Czapla pinned a Siberian Cross on Creston resident Stafania Wojtkow as Canadian Polish Congress president Kazimierz Brusilo looks on during a ceremony on June 12. Marian Wiacek and Frank Dreksler (not pictured) received the same medal.

Republic of Poland consul general Krzysztof Czapla pinned a Siberian Cross on Creston resident Stafania Wojtkow as Canadian Polish Congress president Kazimierz Brusilo looks on during a ceremony on June 12. Marian Wiacek and Frank Dreksler (not pictured) received the same medal.

Creston in 2011: A look back at June

Web Lead

  • Jan. 3, 2012 1:00 p.m.

At this time, we present our annual year in review, looking back at the events of 2011 as recorded in the pages of the Creston Valley Advance.


2 — And the winner was: Dolly Kaetler! Along with everyone else who either took part in or watched the GoGo Grannies’ 70 and Over Ladies Pageant at this year’s Blossom Festival.

Ten contestants, many sponsored by community groups and organizations, vied for top place in a competition that included baking, handicrafts, a fashion parade, talent or speaking ability and providing impromptu answers to questions. In addition to her selection by judges as the top contestant, Kaetler also was voted by her fellow contestants as the most congenial entrant.

• Two local professionals who have worked on their own in recent years decided to pool their talents and share a single office space. Physio-therapist Joanne Gailius and chiropractor Michelle Mayer are now working out the second floor of the Family Practice clinic on 16th Avenue North.

• A half-century of community involvement was acknowledged recently when Norm Husband was named Creston Valley’s 2011-2012 citizen of the year. He served on the Creston Valley Hospital board from 1970-1977, and the rec centre board from 1970-1999. He was on the Endicott centre and Swan Valley Lodge boards and served as president of the Creston branch of the Royal Canadian Legion. Husband was a Creston town councillor from 1991-1998.

• Creston RCMP placed a young moose in a holding cell while they awaited instructions from a conservation officer. The incident began when a 52nd Street resident reported that the baby moose appeared to have been abandoned. Strangely, he made the report in person, with the moose in his vehicle. The moose was later returned to where it was found at the recommendation of a conservation officer.

9 — Nearly $65,000 was raised at the Canadian Cancer Society’s annual Relay for Life, held at Millennium Park. Eleven teams and 300 people took part in the event, and the Purple Peonies, captained by Keisha Ringheim, earned the most, $7,000.

• Emergency responders took a 3 a.m. 911 call on June 5 for what residents in the 1200 block of Birch Street thought was a car fire. Instead, they found remnants of a crude bomb on the front lawn of a residence. A second explosion occurred in the 400 block of Ninth Avenue North.

• Creston and District Public Library patrons now have an outdoor space to enjoy in good weather. The Lawrence Lavender Reading Garden has been constructed to commemorate Lavender’s dedication to libraries. Lavender, former library board chair, passed away in January 2010 after a two-year battle with cancer.

• Another trails project was under construction. When completed in three phases, a rough figure 8 will weave through the former Crestbrook Forest Industries property south of Cook Street. The first phase, now underway, will start at Cedar Street and run along Dodd Creek to Ninth Avenue, where it will connect with town sidewalks.

• Jamie O’Neil and Lisa Elsworth were new to Creston, and to restaurant ownership, but they were confident that their passion for fresh, quality ingredients, interesting recipes and customer service will help their newly opened Real Food Café succeed. Word of mouth quickly helped fill tables in the lower floor of the 10th Avenue building and the patio out back.

“The response has been quite wonderful,” Elsworth said. “We were content to start with a soft opening, but people we know have been sending their friends and coming themselves. It has been busier than we expected during our first days in business.”

16 — The Creston Valley Rotary Club received a BC Principals’ and Vice Principals’ Association Partnership Award for its work with the Erickson Elementary School.

“They have been supporting the Erickson Breakfast Program for more than seven years; in spite of inclement weather and busy personal schedules, they arrive without fail at 7:45 a.m. and have breakfast ready to go every single school day for our first bus students at 8 a.m.,” said principal Nancy DeVuono in her nomination.

• What began on June 7 as a dispute involving threats with a firearm ended with a pickup truck flipping over and landing near a Centennial Park baseball dugout.

Shortly before 8 p.m. Creston RCMP received a report that a male had visited a residence on Ninth Avenue North, where he spun tires, pointed a firearm at the occupants and threatened them. Several calls to police were made by neighbours and the male fled before police arrived.

RCMP officers arrived at Centennial Park and quickly determined the driver was the suspect in the earlier firearms complaint. He was arrested and treated for minor injuries, then held in custody.

• Polish immigrants Stefania Wojtkow, Marian Wiacek and Frank Dreksler received the Siberian Cross in recognition of enforced deportations of Polish citizens to Northern Russia, Siberia and Kazakhstan from 1939-1956.

The medals were pinned on in a ceremony at the Royal Canadian Legion, attended by about 60, including Republic of Poland consul general Krzysztof Czapla and Canadian Polish Congress president Kazimierz Brusilo.

23 — At the Creston-Kootenay Foundation’s grand soiree fundraiser on June 11, Julie Ewashen was honoured as the organization’s volunteer of the year for her extensive work with the CKF’s youth committee, which has organized several projects, including murals in Creston, Canyon and Crawford Bay.

• Amendments to a waste management regulations bylaw got a cold shoulder from several Creston town councilors on June 14. The amendment proposals, based on recommendations from the local Bear Aware program, would have defined when residents could put out garbage for collection and placed restrictions on backyard birdfeeders.

30 — When retired Kootenay-Columbia member of Parliament Jim Abbott arrived in Creston on June 21, he appeared to be just a guy with a box of rocks. That image took a dramatic shift, though, when Creston Valley Rotary Club members and local rock hounds got a chance to crack open those rocks — Abbott was helping a couple of East Kootenay residents research and promote their enormous find of ancient fossils in the Bull River area.