west shore
Bibi Lynge shared this beautiful photo of a sunrise paddle at Pedder Bay. It’s our West Shore photo of the week. Send your photos to shalu@thediscourse.ca and we’ll consider them for a future newsletter.
West Shore

West Shore This Week – Paddling ahead

Shalu Mehta January 13, 2021

Welcome to West Shore This Week, your source for the latest local news and events. Sign up to get this in your inbox every Wednesday.


News and announcements

  • The B.C. Ministry of Children and Family Development was warned by government lawyers that the controversial practice of birth alerts was “illegal and unconstitutional” months before banning them, IndigiNews reports in an exclusive story.
  • Langford City Council has amended a proposed twelve-story development located at 647 Goldstream Ave. after an emotional planning, zoning and affordable housing committee meeting on Monday evening. After many residents voiced their concerns and lack of support for the development, council agreed to amend it to two, six-story buildings. The Discourse will have a story to come on this.
  • Community members are calling for increased mental health supports after Langford teen, Andre Courtemanche, was found dead at Goldstream Provincial Park on Jan. 9, the Goldstream News Gazette reports.
  • The Highlands District Community Association has filed an appeal against a BC Supreme Court decision from June, 2020. The decision upholds a permit to allow for a strip mine on a 64-acre property in the District of Highlands. OK Industries was granted the permit in the spring.
  • The City of Colwood says the new stairs in Latoria Creek Park are now complete. They were replaced to ensure the long-term safety and usability of the stairs.
  • Some Metchosin residents are calling for Coun. Kyara Kahakauwila to step down as deputy mayor after news broke that she travelled to Mexico in December to attend a friend’s wedding, the Times Colonist reports.
  • The City of Langford has partnered with the Vancouver Island Economic Alliance to provide Langford businesses and producers with Island Good licences for 2021. These free, first-come, first-served licences are available until funding runs out and would give licencees a chance to promote their local products.
  • The Canadian military has called off an air search for a missing Langford kayaker in the Strait of Juan de Fuca, near Sooke, and the search has been turned over to Sooke RCMP as a missing person’s case, the Sooke News Mirror reports. Timothy Ross, 38, is believed to have launched his kayak from Ella Beach around noon on Sunday but has not returned.
  • West Shore RCMP is asking for help to locate missing Langford teen, Zenaeh Edwards-Helgasen. She was last seen on Jan. 2 and is known to frequent the Victoria area. She is described as 15-years-old, five-foot-four inches tall and 115 pounds with blonde hair that has recently been dyed black, with a shaved left side of the head. She has brown eyes, a black tattoo of a cross on her fingers and may sometimes go by the name Danielle, Dani or Neveah. Anyone with information on her whereabouts is asked to call their local police immediately. Photos of Zenaeh can be found here.
  • Police are investigating a report of a pedestrian hit-and-run that took place on Jan. 5 around 11:15 p.m. at the crosswalk on Wishart Road and Salton Drive. A woman was using the crosswalk when she was struck by a vehicle, West Shore RCMP says. The driver did not stop and drove up Salton Drive. The suspect vehicle is described as a small, four-door car that is possibly blue in colour. The licence plate is unknown. Police are appealing for the driver to come forward or for anyone with information about the incident to call West Shore RCMP at 250-474-2264.
  • BCSPCA’s Wild Animal Rehabilitation Centre is warning of a deadly salmonella outbreak that is prevalent in Victoria’s songbird population, the Goldstream News Gazette reports. Bird watchers can help by taking down or cleaning feeders.
  • Those looking to visit Service BC can now make an appointment online. Appointments can be made online or by phone.
  • Kindergarten registration for the Sooke School District takes place this month with varying dates based on programs. Find more information about registration on the SD62 website.
  • Researchers from Environment and Climate Change Canada will be continuing to conduct research on gull species in the District of Sooke from Jan. 13 to Jan. 15. They will primarily base their research within parks and beaches at Billings Spit and Whiffin Spit. The team is conducting wildlife research to better understand the health of the Salish Sea.

Community events

  • Weekends from Jan. 16 to Feb. 28: 🎨 Visit Metchosin ArtPod for its new exhibition, About Face: A Portrait Show. There will be a Zoom opening for the show on Jan. 16 at 7 p.m. The show’s feature artist and guest juror is Noah Layne, who will be exhibiting several of his pieces and will do two online drawing workshops. More information can be found on the Facebook event page.
  • Weekends from Jan. 15 to Feb. 5: 🖼 Visit the Esquimalt Community Arts Hub for Island, a third exhibit in a three-part series called Relations. You can also view the digital exhibit online.
  • Saturday, Jan. 16: 🎶 Watch a livestream of Pablo Cardenas, a cuban jazz musician, play at Hermann’s Jazz Club with a stellar quartet. The event starts at 7:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, Jan. 16: 🍾 Bring your bottles to the Sooke Shelter Society bottle drive from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Seaparc sign.
  • Sunday, Jan. 17: 🌲 Join the Royal Commonwealth Society of Vancouver Island for a conversation with biologist, acclaimed author and professor David Haskell about the importance of trees in an urban environment. The event takes place online at 2 p.m.
  • Now until Feb. 5: 📸  A call for entries for Re-Vision, a photo-based art show at Metchosin ArtPod has been extended until Feb. 5. There is a $10 entry fee per submission and a maximum of three submissions per person.

If you’re planning an event that I should consider for an upcoming list, send me an email and let me know.


In your words

A little while ago, we asked community members to share what makes them feel hopeful.

“Having more campfires, spending less time watching T.V. and spending more time talking to my fiance,” is what Jasmine Wietzke says brings hope.

You can’t beat a good fireside chat, in my opinion.