Aaron Hemens is the editor for the Creston Valley Advance. Photo: Rame Kader

Aaron Hemens is the editor for the Creston Valley Advance. Photo: Rame Kader

Column: Reflecting on my three months in Creston

“My big takeaway from my time here is the great sense of community that exists in Creston. Community is at the heart of this town, and what I’ve noticed is that residents are always thinking and acting for the benefit of their neighbours”

With this week’s issue being the last for October, I decided that this would be an appropriate time to reflect on my three months here in Creston.

I arrived in town on Aug. 1, almost three months ago. It’s a little hard to believe, because it feels like more time has passed since then. But at the same time, three months sounds about right.

Overall, I’ve enjoyed my time here as the editor/reporter of the Advance. The job has presented a number of great opportunities that have allowed me to get to know Creston and its history more. I’ve chatted with a lot of interesting characters, met so many lovely residents and covered a wide range of stories. There’s a lot going on for what many describe as a retirement town.

I have to say, of all the stories that I’ve covered, the most that I am proud of is the three-part series I wrote that chronicled the life of Anne Jimmie, a Lower Kootenay Band Elder and residential school survivor.

I learned a lot just by speaking and hearing from Anne, and I’m glad that I was able to share what she told me with readers. The series has garnered a lot of positive feedback, and I am quite happy that I’ve helped create more understanding and awareness around Indigenous peoples and the residential school system.

READ MORE: Saving the inner child: The Healing Journey

But my big takeaway from my time here is the great sense of community that exists in Creston. Community is at the heart of this town, and what I’ve noticed is that residents are always thinking and acting for the benefit of their neighbours. There are a lot of kind, selfless and generous folks in town who have made me feel accepted in the Creston community, and that has made the job a whole lot easier.

People really do care and support one another here, and it’s comforting, to say the least. In a time where many people and businesses are struggling immensely due to the pandemic, it’s really heartwarming to see residents in town be there for one another.

A brief but great example of this sense of community supporting community here in town is when residents stepped up to keep Gleaners Too going.

I’ve been following the situation at Gleaners Too for over a month now, and at one point I thought they were going to shut it down altogether, because from what I gathered, it sounded like they were having a really hard time getting volunteers.

But instead of closing, what happened was that several members of the community realized how important this business is to the community, so they stepped up to fill in those much-needed volunteer roles.

READ MORE: Creston Gleaners Too to remain open

I’m honoured to have been blessed with so many unique, inspiring and memorable experiences in just my three months here. Learning about the town has also allowed me to learn more about myself, and I am excited to see what the next three months will look like.

Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email: aaron.hemens@crestonvalleyadvance.ca


@aaron_hemens
aaron.hemens@crestonvalleyadvance.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Column

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Creston Valley Hospital. Photo: Aaron Hemens
‘Wear your mask, because it’s the best shot we’ve got’: Creston Valley Hospital’s Chief of Staff

“Hard things are much easier to do if we stay connected. This virus is doing its very best to undermine our unity. Remember, we are fighting a virus, not each other,” writes Dr. Nerine Kleinhans

A man wearing a face-mask walks past protestors at a rally against COVID-19 health measures in Creston on Nov. 28. Photo: Aaron Hemens
Creston residents rally against COVID-19 health measures

More than 100 community members of all ages were in attendance, and many were not wearing masks or practicing social distancing

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
47 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health region

1,538 total cases, 399 are active, ten in hospital

This picture of Taghum resident Marc Savard was taken in February when he first spoke to the Nelson Star and little was known about the virus that had shut him out of his job in Wuhan, China. Photo: Tyler Harper
VIDEO: Once an outlier, Nelson man’s COVID-19 experience now typical

Savard was living in Wuhan, China, when the pandemic began

A still frame from “Wheels”. Submitted by Mark Wolfe
Creston short film wins festival award

“Wheels” was selected as one of the recipients of a merit award for the Canada Shorts film festival

One of seven kitties rescued from a property east of Grand Forks Friday, Nov. 27. Photo: Laurie Tritschler
Grand Forks women rescue sick kitties from rural property

Kimberly Feeny and Lisa Valenta spent their Friday nursing seven cats rescued east of the city

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

Kevin Bieksa during his days playing with the Vancouver Canucks. (Photo: commons.wikimedia.org)
Bieksa to guest on free Canucks Alumni ‘Hot Stove’ on Zoom app

Former NHL player has become a game analyst on Sportsnet

114 Canadians were appointed Nov. 27 to the Order of Canada. (Governor General of Canada photo)
Indigenous actor, author, elder, leaders appointed to Order of Canada

Outstanding achievement, community dedication and service recognized

Screenshot of Pastor James Butler giving a sermon at Free Grace Baptist Church in Chilliwack on Nov. 22, 2020. The church has decided to continue in-person services despite a public health order banning worship services that was issued on Nov. 19, 2020. (YouTube)
2 Lower Mainland churches continue in-person services despite public health orders

Pastors say faith groups are unfairly targeted and that charter rights protect their decisions

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A big job: Former forests minister Doug Donaldson stands before a 500-year-old Douglas fir in Saanich to announce preservation of some of B.C.’s oldest trees, July 2019. (B.C. government)
B.C. returning to ‘stand-alone’ forests, rural development ministry

Horgan says Gordon Campbell’s super-ministry doesn’t work

Peter Wilson, left, and Micah Rankin, right, formed the Special Prosecutor team that was tasked with reviewing and litigating charges stemming from the Bountiful investigation. Trevor Crawley photo.
End of Bountiful prosecution wraps up decades of legal battles

Constitutional questions had to be settled before a polygamy prosecution could move forward

2020
Urban wildlife Part VI: The East Kootenay birds of autumn

The work of local photographers printed in the pages of the East Kootenay Advertiser throughout 2020. Part VI.

Most Read