Gear up for 2015 Simon’s Cycles YANA Ride with training rides

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cyclists 2014Join Simon’s Cycles on the 25k or 50k official routes in preparation for one of the Comox Valley’s favorite cycling events. Anyone registered for the 2015 Ride on August 16 is invited to participate.

Cyclists will meet at Simon’s Cycles, Saturday, June 20 for this training opportunity with subsequent training rides happening June 27, July 4, 11, 18, 25 and August 8.

Those choosing the 50k route ride will meet at 8:45 am and leave at 9:00 am and should be prepared to complete the route in 3 hours maximum. The 25k route ride will meet at 9:15 am and leave at 9:30 am and be prepared to finish in 2 hours maximum. For more information about training rides, call Simon’s at 250-339-6683.

If you haven’t yet registered you can do so here. Cyclists registering before July 23rd will receive a commemorative t-shirt with the fantastic 2015 design.

Registration is open for August 16 Simon’s Cycles YANA Ride

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Please join us for the Simon’s Cycles YANA Ride for the love of riding and the love of YANA. The event is shaping up to be fantastic!  Free shirts to all participants who register before July 23 and to all volunteers who contribute to this spirited cycling event. Register here.



YANA beneficiary of artist’s talent

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28620comox09TheDanceYANA is about to get another cash infusion, thanks to the artistic talents of Merville resident Anne Davies.

Davies was recently announced as the “Overall Best of Exhibition Winner” in the inaugural Lilly Oncology on Canvas Canada Art Competition, for her entry, The Dance.

Lilly Oncology on Canvas Canada (LOCC) was created to help those affected by cancer cope with the emotional and physical effects of this disease, through the artistic representation of their cancer journey.

Davies has beaten cancer twice.

“I had been posting on the Canadian Cancer Connections site – it’s a site for people who either have cancer or have had cancer in the past – and I got a note from them saying there was this national competition,” said Davies. “I had posted my paintings on the site now and again but thought, OK I have never [entered a contest] before so I sent in a painting along with a 125-word narrative last September.”

Last week, Davies received notification that she had won the contest. She received a $2,000 first place prize, as well as two $250 prizes for winning two subsidiary categories. The prizes are awarded in the form of a donation to the charity of her choice. Davies has chosen You Are Not Alone.

She said that while there are a lot of worthwhile charities in the Comox Valley, YANA is special to her. Although Davies has never had to use YANA’s services before, she said as a parent, she has an intimate appreciation of the work the charity does.

YANA is a Comox Valley community organization that offers help to local families who need to travel to access medical treatment for their children.

“I chose them because they care for children and families,” she said. “I am a parent and nothing is worse than having a child in desperate need of care.”

Davies’ winning painting is called “The Dance”. She described the painting as an expression of her journey through two separate bouts of cancer.

“What I have come to know – and I don’t know if this is true for everyone – but from my experience, when you first hear you’ve got a cancer diagnosis, it’s overwhelming. It takes over everything and everything seems really dark,” she said. “Cancer doesn’t have a good track record. So it’s in the dance, because you struggle to leave fear behind and go towards health and happiness. That’s why there are two [scenes in the painting]. In the one, you’ll see the darkness, the moon and the sky. The bigger one is the dawn, and it is the dawn that brings the light.

“You have to keep positive when battling, and that’s the dance – the dance between the dark and the light. You are constantly struggling.”

She took her first painting course in the Comox Valley in 1999 and The Dance was painted at MusicFest.

“They have the people, and the tents lit up at night, and the moon to the left of the main stage – that was where it was painted,” she said.

Contest entries will be featured in healthcare centres across the country later this year.

by  Terry Farrell- Comox Valley Record

A Charming Letter From Pierce

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We received this letter from Grade 4 student, Pierce Gerritsen, and were reminded of all that is good in the world and in our schools. It is heartwarming to see kids helping kids and young people who want to make a difference in their community.  A shout out to teachers and parents who nurture this giving spirit. What a fantastic way to start YANA Week in the Schools!

Birthday Money Letter 2015

1st Tuesday Fundraiser, May 5th at the Mex

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Darwin Gagne of Campbell River will be performing an evening concert at the Mex Pub on May 5th, 6:30 to 9:30pm, as guest performer of the 1st Tuesday Fundraisers. His last band “Elmer Thudd” played around Campbell River and Comox Valley for many years, and audiences enjoy his guitar work on renditions of popular songs by James Taylor, Stevie Wonder, and Billy Joel. Although the band is no longer playing, Darwin continues to play where he can house parties and open mics.  “I play whatever music catches my mood of the moment, and so I end up with an eclectic mixture of cover tunes and some original music,” says Darwin.
1st Tuesday Darwin Gagne, May 5, 2015
The evening concert is by donation, and proceeds will go to YANA (you can bring a non-perishable food item for the Comox Valley Food Bank). “We’re grateful to be included again, and happy that Darwin Gagne has chosen to support YANA and the local families that access our services with his music,” says Ocean Varney, Community Relations Coordinator at YANA.

“Darwin’s music is very appealing to audiences,” says event organizer Judy Wing. “My husband Bruce and I have hosted open mics in the Comox Valley for many years, and Darwin is a performer that patrons inquire about to know when they’ll get a chance to hear him again. If they don’t know him by name, they refer to him as the James Taylor guy, and we know just who they mean.”

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