Karly Blats

Dairy cows feed at Parksville’s Morningstar Farm. — Black Press file photo

Vancouver Island farmer says new USMCA deal ‘terribly weakens’ Canadian dairy industry

Clarke Gourlay of Morningstar Farm says trade deal will negatively impact his farm’s milk production

Dairy cows feed at Parksville’s Morningstar Farm. — Black Press file photo
Minister of Agriculture Lana Popham gets a tour of Parksville’s Salt & Harrow Farm by owner and operator Seann Dory on Sept. 18 before she announced a $300,000 commitment from the province to help farmers access affordable farm land. — Karly Blats photo

Ministry of Agriculture commits $300,000 to help B.C. farmers obtain land

B.C. Land Matching Program supports access to affordable farmland for young farmers

Minister of Agriculture Lana Popham gets a tour of Parksville’s Salt & Harrow Farm by owner and operator Seann Dory on Sept. 18 before she announced a $300,000 commitment from the province to help farmers access affordable farm land. — Karly Blats photo
Google Maps photo                                 A woman was evacuated by stretcher off a hiking trail near Cameron Lake on Sunday, Sept. 16 by Arrowsmith Search and Rescue, Alberni Valley Rescue Squad and Nanaimo Search and Rescue after injuring her ankle.

SAR squads perform technical rescue after hiker injures ankle near Cameron Lake

Woman was evacuated down steep mountain trail by stretcher on Sunday

Google Maps photo                                 A woman was evacuated by stretcher off a hiking trail near Cameron Lake on Sunday, Sept. 16 by Arrowsmith Search and Rescue, Alberni Valley Rescue Squad and Nanaimo Search and Rescue after injuring her ankle.
Karly Blats photo Five-year-old Lily Fras holds three of 16 puppies born to mother Sophie, a purebred black lab. The puppies were born on Sept. 9 on an Errington farm.

Sixteen purebred lab puppies born in one litter on Island farm

Birthing continued for close to seven hours

Karly Blats photo Five-year-old Lily Fras holds three of 16 puppies born to mother Sophie, a purebred black lab. The puppies were born on Sept. 9 on an Errington farm.
Photo submitted by Aaron Poirier                                A black Hyundai drove off the road west of Koen Road near Coombs on Sunday evening, sending the vehicle’s three passengers to the hospital.

Single vehicle crash near Coombs sends three to hospital

Accident occurred west of Koen Road Sunday evening

Photo submitted by Aaron Poirier                                A black Hyundai drove off the road west of Koen Road near Coombs on Sunday evening, sending the vehicle’s three passengers to the hospital.
Two-year-old Jaxon was admitted to BC Children’s Hospital in Vancouver after been diagnosed with a strain of E. coli. Photo submitted by Jolene Secord.

B.C. family urges parents to follow gut after toddler contracts E.coli infection

The cause of infection is unknown, but parents suspect it came from deer feces

Two-year-old Jaxon was admitted to BC Children’s Hospital in Vancouver after been diagnosed with a strain of E. coli. Photo submitted by Jolene Secord.
B.C. man, 71, builds bike that can glide along unused railroad

B.C. man, 71, builds bike that can glide along unused railroad

Island Corridor Foundation says rail use not permitted on active railroad

B.C. man, 71, builds bike that can glide along unused railroad
Port Alberni’s Chase Spencer performs at the Zattzoo Project’s Youth Battle of the Bands at the Rainbow Room in 2016. KARLY BLATS PHOTO

Young musicians invited to perform at Port Alberni’s Youth Battle of the Bands

The Battle, in its fourth year, takes place at the Rainbow Room on May 26

Port Alberni’s Chase Spencer performs at the Zattzoo Project’s Youth Battle of the Bands at the Rainbow Room in 2016. KARLY BLATS PHOTO
As bears are coming out of hibernation in search of food, conservation officers are telling people to keep their garbage secure until collection day. WILDSAFEBC.COM PHOTO

Be Bear Smart with your garbage around the Alberni Valley

Bears are out of hibernation and looking for food

As bears are coming out of hibernation in search of food, conservation officers are telling people to keep their garbage secure until collection day. WILDSAFEBC.COM PHOTO
Ayaka Takekawa of Nanaimo carries her selection from the pumpkin patch during the 10th annual Harvest Festival at Silver Meadows Farm in Errington Sunday, Oct. 15, 2017. ��� J.R. Rardon photo

Lack of security: why Vancouver Island food production is on the decline

Big Read: agriculture a big, expensive commitment as advocates push to make us more food secure

Ayaka Takekawa of Nanaimo carries her selection from the pumpkin patch during the 10th annual Harvest Festival at Silver Meadows Farm in Errington Sunday, Oct. 15, 2017. ��� J.R. Rardon photo
Sonja Drinkwater covers one of many Charity Golf Classics at the Alberni Golf Club during her time as a freelance writer.                                SUBMITTED PHOTO

Columnist Sonja Drinkwater ‘downsizing’ at Alberni Valley News

Celebrate popular Scene and Heard writer at April 22 retirement party

Sonja Drinkwater covers one of many Charity Golf Classics at the Alberni Golf Club during her time as a freelance writer.                                SUBMITTED PHOTO
Hikers climb a Vancouver Island trail to 50-40 Peak on Oct. 1. Karly Blats/ Vancouver Island Free Daily

Big Read: locked out of the woods

Vancouver Islanders struggle to balance back country public access with private land protection

Hikers climb a Vancouver Island trail to 50-40 Peak on Oct. 1. Karly Blats/ Vancouver Island Free Daily
Jenna Domovich,left, who is job shadowing in the Bread of Life kitchen through North Island College and the centre’s new operations manager Lynda Wright stand in front the recently built office at the front of the Bread of Life. KARLY BLATS PHOTO

New manager at the Bread of Life hopes to ramp up volunteer base

Lynda Wright joined the centre in January as operations manager

Jenna Domovich,left, who is job shadowing in the Bread of Life kitchen through North Island College and the centre’s new operations manager Lynda Wright stand in front the recently built office at the front of the Bread of Life. KARLY BLATS PHOTO
Pat Deakin, economic development manager with the City of Port Alberni, left, and Denis Sauve, Port Alberni city councillor, grab some Vancouver Island made products during a presentation at Hertel Meat’s in Port Alberni on Tuesday, March 27 introducing a new initiative from Vancouver Island Economic Alliance that aims to highlight Island produced food in grocery stores. KARLY BLATS PHOTO

Island Good program introduces new way to identify local food

Quality Foods is amongst the four stores involved in the program to help shoppers buy locally

Pat Deakin, economic development manager with the City of Port Alberni, left, and Denis Sauve, Port Alberni city councillor, grab some Vancouver Island made products during a presentation at Hertel Meat’s in Port Alberni on Tuesday, March 27 introducing a new initiative from Vancouver Island Economic Alliance that aims to highlight Island produced food in grocery stores. KARLY BLATS PHOTO
A house on the corner of Beaver Creek Road and Wadena Road caught fire early Wednesday (March 21). KARLY BLATS PHOTO

UPDATE: Arson not ruled out in Beaver Creek house fire

A house on Beaver Creek Road and Wadena Road caught fire early Wednesday morning

A house on the corner of Beaver Creek Road and Wadena Road caught fire early Wednesday (March 21). KARLY BLATS PHOTO
A house on the corner of Beaver Creek Road and Wadena Road caught fire early Wednesday (March 21). KARLY BLATS PHOTO

Beaver Creek home destroyed in early morning fire

A house on Beaver Creek Road and Wadena Road caught fire early Wednesday morning

A house on the corner of Beaver Creek Road and Wadena Road caught fire early Wednesday (March 21). KARLY BLATS PHOTO
Ocean lover Peter Mieras has made a short film called I Am Salmon that highlights the life cycle of wild pacific salmon and their relationship to First Nations people and wildlife. PHOTO COURTESY PETER MIERAS

Alberni film maker getting worldwide recognition for short film on salmon life cycle

Peter Mieras’ short film I Am Salmon has been accepted to film festivals around the world

Ocean lover Peter Mieras has made a short film called I Am Salmon that highlights the life cycle of wild pacific salmon and their relationship to First Nations people and wildlife. PHOTO COURTESY PETER MIERAS
Jazz duo Steve Christofferson and Heather Keizur are bringing their bilingual concert to Char’s Landing on Friday, March 23. Submitted Photo

Jazz duo bring bilingual show to Char’s Landing

Heather Keizur and Steve Christofferson play the Alberni venue on Friday, March 23

Jazz duo Steve Christofferson and Heather Keizur are bringing their bilingual concert to Char’s Landing on Friday, March 23. Submitted Photo
B.C. school closes after six year old First Nation boy dies in Port Alberni home

B.C. school closes after six year old First Nation boy dies in Port Alberni home

The Port Alberni school will be closed the rest of the week following the death of a six-year-old

B.C. school closes after six year old First Nation boy dies in Port Alberni home
Haahuupayak Elementary School will be shut the remainder of the week after the death of a young child. FACEBOOK PHOTO

Young Nuu-chah-nulth boy remembered by his big, beautiful smile

A six-year-old boy died in a Port Alberni home on March 13

Haahuupayak Elementary School will be shut the remainder of the week after the death of a young child. FACEBOOK PHOTO