A Year in Review: 2021 in stories Part II

Looking back at stories that moved Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows in 2021

In the second edition of our stories in review, we will cover everything we reported on from September to October. It’s a lot. So, I hope you enjoy looking back and maybe going over stories you might have missed. 

September 

Maple Ridge residents face connectivity issues amid TELUS announcement of $60M fibre optik project

Maple Ridge residents dissatisfied with their wireless internet connectivity may be seeing improved service as TELUS announced a mega project as part of their COVID-19 economic recovery plan. 

Telus is investing a whopping $60 million to provide fibre optic network to Maple Ridge residents and businesses as part of their commitment to invest $13 billion by 2024. 

However, several residents told The Ridge their internet connection was as tumultuous as the year 2021. 

Read more on our website

First-person: Everything you should know about Suicide Prevention Awareness Month 

September is the month that marks Suicide Prevention Awareness Month and although there is a plethora of literature and research on the whats and whys of suicide, we often tend to overlook the very basic signs. 

A cry for help isn’t always a literal cry. Sometimes it’s avoidance by cancelling plans, delaying meetings, or not returning calls. 

Sometimes it’s just the inability to go out for a walk because you’re exhausted mentally. Mental exhaustion does manifest into physical exhaustion.  

I was diagnosed with depression on October 31, 2019. It was Halloween and the day was quite literally the scariest of my life. Pun intended. 

If you need help or think/know someone who does, please call 1-800-SUICIDE for help. 

You can find more resources here. 

National Truth and Reconciliation Day is not a holiday: Indigenous people share why the day is significant

Grace George, Chief of Katzie First Nation, is from the first generation in her family to not attend a residential school.  

She’s only 47. 

Chief Grace shared that The National Day for Truth and Reconciliation honours those who survived the residential school system but those who were lost and the legacies they weren’t able to leave behind. 

Oftentimes people take a day off as an excuse to go on a road trip, staycation and take a break. 

“People are like ‘woohoo! It’s a holiday.’ It’s not a holiday. It’s a remembrance day,” explained Maple Ridge resident Danielle Pauquette.

Read the full story on our website

MP Marc Dalton will push for Alouette fish ladder; advocates treatment over safe supply

In a conversation with The Ridge, the MP shared that the residents should give him time to pressure the Liberal government for action on climate change and the opioid crisis.

 “I’m very supportive of getting a fish ladder made in the Alouette River down to the Alouette Lake but of course that would require collaboration between the B.C. government and B.C. Hydro. But, I would like to do whatever I can so that salmon can spawn in the Alouette River which is their natural habitat,” Dalton said. 

Although things would’ve been different if Conservatives were elected as the government, Dalton has a motion to tackle the opioid crisis in the province. 

“The NDP and Liberals are more focused on providing a safe supply and I don’t think that’s a long-term solution. I created a motion to be debated in Parliament in October on how the government can bring about more support for the area of treatment and recovery, I think that needs to be the focus,” he said. “It’s one thing to keep people alive and another to give them a life.”

October

Dirty Vegan comes to Pitt Meadows and hopes to stay 

People tend to confuse veganism with vegetarianism. 

Vegetarians avoid meats of all kinds while vegans avoid all animal products including meat, dairy, honey – basically anything that comes from an animal. 

But veganism is also a philosophy for many. 

Being vegan means different things to people; for some, it’s about healthier lifestyle choices, for others, it’s about protecting animals. 

For Marieta Jamett, 49, it’s the latter. After working at a leading meat processing company, she learned the unsettling truth about how animals are treated. 

Read more on our website

Ridge-Meadows sees increase in condo sales, REBGV reports 

Condo sales went up in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows following the trend of the region, according to a report published by the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver in October 2021.

In Ridge-Meadows, 51 townhouses were sold in September 2021, the same as August 2021,  whereas 60 condos were sold in September 2021.   

House price: In Maple Ridge, a house was $1.14 million and $1.2 million in Pitt Meadows. 

Townhouse price: It was worth $702,900 in Maple Ridge and $759,200 in Pitt Meadows. 

Apartment price: It was worth $441,000 in Maple Ridge and $555,900 in Pitt Meadows.

ElderDog gives human-dog companionship a new meaning 

According to the 2016 Population Census, 14.5 per cent of Maple Ridge and 15.8 per cent of Pitt Meadows total population is 65 years and over so, naturally sometimes seniors in the region need assistance especially when it comes to taking care of their dogs. 

This is where ElderDog steps in. 

An organization built on the belief that a dog is important in a household, they support seniors with a variety of services such as dog walking, a trip to the pet store or veterinary clinic and more. 

But most importantly, when a senior needs to go to the hospital for a medical procedure or their health is impacted, ElderDog ensures that their dog is taken care of. 

Read the story on our website

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October marks breast cancer awareness month which impacts approximately 1 in 8 women in their lifetime. 

Tammy Clark, 54, is one of them. 

Clark’s mother had breast cancer so her instinctive reaction was to begin mammograms in her 40s. In 2013, she was diagnosed with breast cancer.

But what caught her off-guard was the way cancer impacted her, something she had not expected from her mother’s experience. 

“What I knew was that all breast cancer is the same and what my mom had is probably what I will have. This is the thing with breast cancer, there are so many factors to it and I didn’t know that before I got cancer,” Clark shared. 

Read more on our website

Vegan soap maker shares how she became an entrepreneur in Ridge Meadows  

A business development manager by profession, Adrienne Yee became a vegan soap business owner in November 2020 and hasn’t looked back since. 

“I was actually making vegan soap for myself. I found it really therapeutic and fun to make and at that time Christmas was coming up. Things were slow and I was trying to find a new hobby and I thought I should make them for the holidays,” she said. 

Read more on our website

Can art and intuition work together? An intuitive artist thinks so

As someone passionate about art, I have spent years replicating works to perfect them. I have done a lot of still drawing and painting but never had the courage to let my hand and mind wander on the paper. 

I studied fine art. I was taught about all these measurements, rules and what counts as ‘good’ artwork so, how can I trust my intuition that will not let me draw a perfect circle? 

But, intuition art is exactly that. An art form, as the name suggests, to follow your intuition. By definition, intuition is to immediately understand something without conscious reasoning. 

So intuitive art sounds like an oxymoron. But Tannis Ross shared that it’s not. 

Read more on our website

Ghost hunter recalls paranormal activities in Maple Ridge  

When you hear the word ghost hunter, what comes to mind? For me it is Ed and Lorraine Warren, the famous paranormal investigators we’ve seen in the Conjuring series. 

It’s always been a mystery how people become interested rather than spooked out, by ghosts and spirits. 

A sister duo, Gina and Victoria Armstrong were always fascinated by the paranormal more so for the historical aspect of it. 

They went public with their excursions in 2020 after working on a haunted calendar with the owner of Ghost of Vancouver, Greg Mansfield and people started reaching out to them about experiences where paranormal activity is known to happen. 

Read more on our website.

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