IS THIS A PROTEST? - theHumm April 2024

IS THIS A PROTEST? - theHumm April 2024

By Sally Hansen

Art… and Soul

You bet it is! And it’s the first arts protest theHumm has covered in our 24 years of existence. This creative arts protest is the inspiration of two residents of the new Artisan Village in Smiths Falls. Those of you who read the feature article in our October 2023 issue will not be surprised to learn that Bel Angeles is one instigator. Opal Adams is the other. Both of these small, non-white female artists continue to struggle against and overcome significant barriers and prejudices throughout their lives. Both are eager to provide opportunities for other artists to experience the satisfaction and empowerment that comes from raising your artistic voice in protest.

In their call to artists, Bel and Opal voiced their belief in the power of art to transform society and bring about change. Their raison d’être for this protest exhibition is to give artists “an opportunity to use your unique voices to challenge perceptions, provoke thoughts, and ignite discussions about some of the most pressing issues of our time. From climate change, gender, race, and ethnicity, to power, anti-hate and anti-oppression, equity, diversity, and inclusion, we want you to delve deep and share your interpretations, reflections and narratives on the idea of protest. Let your creativity be a tool for inquiry, a voice for the voiceless, and a platform for change. Your art has the power to educate, heal, and inspire. We believe that by working together, we can make a difference.”

Fear not, prospective viewer. This is Canadian art, and the raw carnage of Picasso’s anti-war classic Guernica is nowhere in sight. The fifteen participants come from radically different life experiences, and their creative protests are nuanced and provocative. A few are gently contemplative, and they succeed as well in inviting reflection and emotional connection.

The exhibition includes two spoken word artists. One is singer/songwriter Christine Graves performing Sparrow Parable, a piece she wrote in support of activists struggling for justice throughout the world. The other is Chris Silvermoon presenting a spoken piece of confessional poetry, based on her own experience of living with visible and invisible disabilities. Chris is a longtime activist working to improve the lives of all women and children.

The artworks are as varied as their creators. The only male participant, Steve Rothfuchs, is a member of Arts Carleton Place. One work is titled Paraphrase Joe: We are anti-fascist…anti-violence…anti-racist…pro-creative…against ignorance. The title pays tribute to punk rock musician Joe Strummer of the Clash. His other piece protests the atrocity of child soldiers.

In a 180° shift of focus, Julia Lockie’s artwork is titled Just Breathe. In her submission she relates to many of us as she questions, “What business do I, a white, educated, privileged and comfortable Canadian woman, have protesting about my world? Why would anyone care what I have to say about anything of import?” Her mixed media work expresses her need for respite from a world filled with noise, dealing with the influence of the Internet and social media, while caring deeply about things beyond her “safe little life”.

Another member of Artisan Village, Carol Richardson, is displaying a mixed media piece titled Peacenik. Her abstract work uses archival materials and incorporates images to protest the ongoing wars and loss of lives in four different countries. Richardson’s previous work and experience in the domains of housing and homelessness, environment and climate justice, as well as health promotion, support her deeply abiding belief in community and the need for structural change.

Kingston fibre artist Denise Sokolsky presents a subdued but eloquently powerful testament to the Black Lives Matter movement that she created shortly after the murder of George Floyd. She describes her piece as: “…historic in nature as it references the multitude of black lives, generation upon generation, who toiled in the cotton fields for the benefit of white owners… What has changed since these brutal, historic times? How far have we progressed towards racial equality?”

Co-organizer Bel Angeles’ works are a call to awareness and empathy. The back of her new recto-verso piece displays the names of more than 2,300 journalists killed and missing in the line of duty since 1992. It was inspired by the current targeted killing of journalists covering Gaza, and her personal knowledge of journalists killed in her native Philippines as well — one of the most dangerous places in the world to be a journalist. Bel knows that as journalists are killed, so the stories of the people and communities they cover are silenced, hidden, made invisible. This is her protest.

Co-organizer Opal Adams stopped painting for eight years as a result of trauma from systemic belittlement and prejudice experienced in her work life. Fortunately, her husband’s involvement with the recent creation of the Artisan Village facility, coupled with her burgeoning friendships with an enclave of supportive artists, have seduced her into resuming her former successful arts career. Her piece is a powerful and personal protest on behalf of all women against the sexism and racism she has experienced.

Jana Jaros describes her work as the “personal expression of breaking barriers and visually voicing a suppressed narrative”. She uses her art to “confront taboos and societal norms, rejecting silencing and embracing truths that define identity in the present and shape the future.”

Genevieve LeDuc is passionate about female empowerment. In her mixed media work titled Salem, referencing the Massachusetts witch trials of 1692-93, she protests ongoing gender inequity, censorship, and misogyny’s enduring legacy, merging art with social commentary to provoke dialogue and to advocate for change.

Cecilia Troy’s piece confronts the rise of extreme right-wing ideology that threatens basic rights in Canada today. Imagine portrays a rough exterior breaking to reveal the vibrant Pride flag, “envisioning a world free from judgment where authenticity thrives and oppressive regimes fall. It’s a call to imagine a society where hiding behind layers is unnecessary and true freedom reigns.”

Crafting beauty from damage, MaGi’s assemblage art confronts the chaos, reminding us that control is fleeting and imperfections make us human. One recycled piece at a time, she crafts beauty from damage, protesting against loss and accepting change.

Through quilt-making, Katy van Dorsser sews together stories of reclaiming spaces and being heard. Living with a traumatic brain injury for over six years, quilt-making became her healing sanctuary — each stitch representing victory over adversity.

With her textile piece titled You Do Not Represent Me, Karla Mather-Cocks of Alberta challenges the disconnect between elected officials and their constituents. Her piece serves as a physical manifestation of the artist’s frustration with their provincial MLA, highlighting concerns about racist and inappropriate views.

Now living in Smiths Falls, Aryn Morris was an early activist in Michigan, challenging the unjust laws that resulted from the legalization of medical cannabis. After entering the cannabis industry, she traveled with American magazine High Times and advocated for pediatric patients’ access to CBD. Her Prohibited Flower artwork is a tribute to the progress made through protest and the transformative power of cannabis.

When I asked organizer Opal Adams about her aspirations for this compelling Protest Exhibition, she left me with this exhortation to pass on to our readers: “If you don’t understand why people want to protest, you definitely need to come to this show.”

Is This A Protest? runs from April 13 to May 18, Wed–Sun from 11am to 4pm at Artisan Village in Smiths Falls, with a vernissage on April 13 from 5–8pm. The Artist Trading Card at the top of the page lists exhibitors and provides coordinates.

Artist Trading Card

WHO Opal Adams, Bel Angeles, MaGi, Christine Graves, Jana F. Jaros, Genevieve LeDuc, Julia Lockie, Karla Mather-Cocks, Aryn Morris, Carol Richardson, Steve Rothfuchs, Chris Silvermoon, Denise Sokolsky, Cecilia Troy, Katy van Dorsser

WHAT Is This A Protest? Art Exhibition by 15 inspirational and challenging artists

WHERE Artisan Village, 10 Maple Ave N, Smiths Falls,

WHEN April 13 to May 18, Wed–Sun, 11am to 4pm,Vernissage Apr. 13, 5–8pm

WHY To challenge perceptions, provoke thoughts, ignite discussions and empower artists to be a catalyst for change.


IS THIS A PROTEST? - theHumm April 2024

By Sally Hansen

Art… and Soul

You bet it is! And it’s the first arts protest theHumm has covered in our 24 years of existence. This creative arts protest is the inspiration of two residents of the new Artisan Village in Smiths Falls. Those of you who read the feature article in our October 2023 issue will not be surprised to learn that Bel Angeles is one instigator. Opal Adams is the other. Both of these small, non-white female artists continue to struggle against and overcome sign......


A Classic Whodunnit
Agatha Christie’s Black Coffee at Studio Theatre
- theHumm April 2024

By Joseph Nieforth

Sir Claud Amory, in the company of Hercule Poirot and Captain Hastings, sends you an urgent request to join him at Studio Theatre Perth for Agatha Christie’s classic play, Black Coffee, beginning the 4th of April.

In the opulent confines of Sir Claud Amory’s country estate, anticipation hangs thick in the air. The esteemed scientist has summoned the renowned Belgian detective, Hercule Poirot, to discuss a matter of utmost secrecy — a ground-breaking formula that could revolutionize ......


Readers, Writers, and Poets - theHumm April 2024

By John Pigeau

April is National Poetry Month. To celebrate, Almonte Readers & Writers (ARW) are bringing some top-notch talent to town. On Thursday, April 11 at Equator Coffee Roasters, as part of their exciting new delve reading series, ARW will host award-winning Ottawa-based writers Jean Van Loon and Conyer Clayton for a rich discussion and readings from their latest books.

Van Loon won the 2023 Ottawa Book Award for English fiction/poetry for her collection of poetry Nuclear Fa......


Celebrate Indigenous Culture in CP - theHumm April 2024

By Lisa Garrett

The third annual Indigenous Cultural Fair will take place in Carleton Place on May 11 from 10am to 3pm. Admission to this event is free. We extend a generous welcome to all who would like to come, and by spending some of your day with us you are giving the most generous gift you have… some time from your one wild and precious life.

This community-led event serves as a fundraiser for Art for Aid , an organization in Lanark C......


Celebrate the ClassicsWith the Arnprior Choir - theHumm April 2024

The Arnprior Community Choir (ACC) will present their annual spring concert “Celebrate the Classics” on May 3 at 7:30pm and May 4 at 2pm. The 65-voice choir will be singing a variety of choral masterworks showcasing Schubert and Handel, as well as several Canadian compositions. Grace St. Andrew’s United Church in Arnprior, built in 1890, is a beautiful historic stone church with fabulous acoustics to highlight this classical choral music concert.

To start the program, the ACC mix......


4F Auction Concoction
Food, Fun, Fashion & Favourites
- theHumm April 2024

Get ready: the Friends of Mississippi Mills Library 4F Auction Concoction that raised over $7500 last year will be presented in May and June this year, with attractions galore. Those 4 Fs promise food, fun, fashion and favourites, and range from tours to cleaning services. This will be the third spring auction, already promising to be a hit.

Maybe you have a service you’d like to offer. Last year there were dump runs to doughnuts, cooking demos to country walks, all donated by the community. Local businesses and organizations remain committed to this project, and the Friends are hopin......


Cheerfully Made Spring Market - theHumm April 2024

By Emily Arbour

I am perpetually in awe of people who make things with their hands.

A crafty dabbler myself, my skills are perhaps more entrepreneurial in the sense that my focus is usually on turning materials into money rather than creating for the sake of the art.

I’m not an artist.

I’m creative.

But I’m not an artist.

My craft is community. I love to create opportunities that bring people together in support of one another. One of the best ways I’ve found to do this ......


Electrify to Decarbonize Lanark - theHumm April 2024

By Sue Brandum and Scott Hortop

As we wean ourselves off fossil fuels, many of us are asking: where will the new electric power come from? Can we generate enough? Can we distribute it where it is needed, when it is needed?

Climate Network Lanark (CNL) is developing plans to help us explore these “system” questions together at an Electrify Lanark Forum in the spring. Everyone from across Lanark County is welcome: residents, community and business leaders, and a particularly energetic invitation to our elected municipal official......


Volunteer Forum - theHumm April 2024

By Wendy O’Keefe

Raise your hand if you want to help your community! Are you looking to learn more about some of the service organizations in our area? Interested in connecting with other volunteers?

This is a unique and exciting opportunity to explore volunteering opportunities in the service sector and connect with those who are already volunteering. On Thursday, April 11, Home Hospice North Lanark is hosting a forum for just these purposes, and we hope you’ll join us at the Almonte Civ......


Frankenstein Comes to The Station Theatre - theHumm April 2024

“Thought provoking and highly entertaining” is how the Palos Verdes News described this dramatization of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, adapted for the stage by Tim Kelly. The story of Dr. Frankenstein and his monster, as well as the monster’s bride, has been reiterated in many forms and styles. From horror to comedy, the story has been told from all points of views and sometimes to extremes. This version is, in fact, a thoughtful one, telling a deep story about belonging, choices a......


Trivia Night for MMYC - theHumm April 2024

The Mississippi Mills Youth Centre is pleased to announce their first ever Trivia Night fundraiser! On May 4, teams of trivia buffs will compete for prizes and glory at Almonte Old Town Hall (14 Bridge Street). Trivia master Julian Smith (AKA Señor Trivialmonte) will test your knowledge of popular music, pop culture, and other general topics. Doors open at 6:30pm and the competition starts at 7pm.

You can sign up as a team of 4–8 players, or register as an individual or smaller group and be matched with other friendly trivia lovers. Tickets are $25 per person and are available online ......


Must Be NiceGroup Art Exhibition - theHumm April 2024

When visitors enter the Art Factory in Renfrew, they often remark with a casual “Must be nice…,” whether referring to the abundance of paint supplies or the artist’s lifestyle. This exhibit takes a tongue-in-cheek approach to this sentiment. While creating art can indeed be enjoyable, it overlooks the sacrifices, authenticity, and passion required to share one’s inner world. This collective showcase features over 140 works from a group of thirteen courageous individuals who invite viewers to ponder the deeper question: “What message does this art convey?”

Must Be Nice runs at the Art ......


Remembering Justin Francis - theHumm April 2024

By David Frisch

Justin Francis’s death by suicide last summer felt like a 20-lb weight had been put on my chest. It washed over me like a tidal wave of sadness, and confusion, and compassion.

“Why?” is the question I asked the most. And the answer is, “No one knows.” Justin let no one know how much pain he was in, what he was going through. Not his brother, not even his wife. Certainly not me.

I’d become friendly with Justin during the four months that he provided a home for the Almonte Song Circle at......


TNIM Presents Norm Foster’s Looking - theHumm April 2024

By Janet M. Leppard

So begins the romantic comedy Looking, written by the popular Canadian playwright Norm Foster. Four 40/50 somethings are looking (or not!) for romance or a relationship. It is, of course, a universal theme that everyone can relate to — not least our four participants! But as they will tell you, the road is filled with potholes. In this play, it’s also filled with crackling one-liners.

Directed by Omar Simonyi, the play combines the talents of Janet Hilliard, Tom Hilliard, Amy Hawkins and......


Earthfest 2024
Planet-friendly Fun at Carleton Place’sSecond Annual Earth Day Celebration
- theHumm April 2024

The Carleton Place Environmental Advisory Committee (CPEAC) invites one and all to learn, engage with, and celebrate nature at Earthfest 2024. This free, family-friendly event will be held on Saturday, April 20 from 11am to 3pm at Market Square in Carleton Place (7 Beckwith St.), with satellite events at All Nations Church (39 Bridge St.) and the Carleton Place Library. 

This year’s lineup features even more workshops, live music, entertainment, food and craft vendors, free tree seedlings c......


Great Music foran Important Cause - theHumm April 2024

Lanark County Community Justice is offering up a fun and musical way to support the wonderful work they do in our area. The Restorative Justice Series features three concerts by fabulous local performers at a trio of venues over the next three months.

The first takes place on Friday, April 26 at Oakfield Rugby Park in Perth, and features songwriter Doug Barr. Too Far from the Water, Barr’s folk/rock 2015 release, was just the latest in a long musical career. Since then, four new tunes hav......


Portraits and CommissionsArtist’s Talk at Perth Library - theHumm April 2024

On Wednesday, April 10 from 5–6pm, Catherine Orfald will give a presentation at the Perth & District Union Library. An exhibit of Catherine’s artwork is currently on display at the library until the end of April.

Catherine suggested doing a presentation about her portraits and commissions because these pieces typically go directly to the buyer and are not seen by the wider audience. She has done about 50 commissions, including people, animal companions and landscapes.



Ring In the Spring with The Bells of St. Paul’s - theHumm April 2024

By Grace Armstrong

If you happen to be walking on Gore Street in Perth on a Tuesday afternoon and you think you hear the sound of bells coming from the windows of St. Paul’s, it is not your imagination. It is the sound of twelve dedicated bell ringers who hail from Perth, Glen Tay, Brooke Valley, Bass Lake, Rideau Lake, Portland and Carleton Place. They are preparing for the Spring Concert, which will be held in St. Paul’s United Church at 2pm on Sunday, April 21.

The repertoire comprises a collection of c......


Skills for Self-Sufficiency - theHumm April 2024

The Cordwood Folk School & Homestead is nestled in the woods, on unceded territory of the Shabot Obaadjiwan, 20 minutes west of Perth. They have been running courses since 2018 and are glad to host many returning instructors each year, as well as bringing in new professionals of their craft to broaden the scope of media offered. This spring’s lineup includes Leatherworking with Willa Murray, where you will learn about selecting, cutting, punching and hand stitching leather in a on......


Volunteers Needed to Get Mini Forest Going - theHumm April 2024

By Sally Smith

Let’s think about forests — leaves underfoot, tree canopy overhead, birds, bugs and bees. It’s wonderful to get out, to breathe, to listen.

In town that’s hard to do… but soon people in Smiths Falls will be able to see a tiny “forest” growing in Corbett Park.

It all starts in April.

Dave Thornley and a crew of volunteers are building it; it’s based on a Japanese concept — the Miyawaki Method — initially developed to counter deforestation in that country after the war.



Arts Carleton Place
Unique Spring Fine Art Show
- theHumm April 2024

By Stephanie Stevens

While I was visiting at a friend’s house recently, her son introduced me to his “art”. That sounds like an every-day, very common occurrence, but the wonderful thing was that it was not one of his own masterpieces (of which there were many in the house), but rather an elegant work his mom had allowed him to pick out and take home from one of the Arts Carleton Place (ACP) art shows. 

This little boy knew everything about the piece. He explained to me where it was......


Camp Lau-Ren 2024 - theHumm April 2024

Almonte resident Nadia Taylor-Meyer has been hired as Camp Lau-Ren’s 2024 summer coordinator. Nadia is no stranger to Camp Lau-Ren, as she started as a camper and has returned as a counsellor and volunteer leader. Last year she took on the role of head cook.

In 2024, as summer coordinator, she will act as liaison between the Executive Director Steve McCulloch and all other summer staff. Nadia will help Steve with administration and training until camp starts. She wil......


Heritage House Museum Opens for Spring - theHumm April 2024

The Smiths Falls Heritage House Museum is excited to announce that they are opening for the 2024 season on Wednesday, April 3. They will be open for museum tours, inquiries and genealogical research from Wednesday through Sunday, 10am to 5pm.

Gallery Exhibits

Opening on April 3, The Glorious Colours of Nature from artist Renate Wesley invites viewers to feast their eyes on Mother Nature’s glory and the joy and excitement of colour! Through......


Spring Brings an Abundance of Art - theHumm April 2024

By Miss Cellaneous

Two New Shows at Sivarulrasa Gallery 

 Almonte’s Sivarulrasa Gallery will present two new exhibitions beginning April 5 and running until May 10. Michael Pittman: The Hinterlands will run in Galleries I and II. This solo exhibition features a new body of work by the Newfoundland-based artist. The show title references the periphery of what is understood and inhabited, and what may lie beyond. “The ways in which we interact with our surroun......


Governor General’s Foot Guards Band Plays Perth - theHumm April 2024

The Governor General’s Foot Guards Regimental Band will be performing at St. Paul’s United Church in Perth on Sunday, April 28 at 2pm.

Based at Cartier Square Drill Hall in downtown Ottawa, the 30-piece concert band is part of the most senior reserve infantry regiment in Canada, dating back to its formation in 1872. They share a close connection to the Governor General and provide music for many military ceremonies in the Ottawa area, including the annual nationally televised Remembrance Day ceremo......


ADHS Presents Peter and the Starcatcher - theHumm April 2024

By — Madison Sonnenburg is a grade 12 student at Almonte & District High School

Almonte District High School Drama Club’s production of Peter and the Starcatcher, directed by Ms. Jennifer Sheffield, is a heartwarming and funny tale. It tells the story of Molly Aster, a young girl training with her father, Lord Leonard Aster, to become a Starcatcher, a title given only to select people. Along the way she encounters various characters, from pirates and sailors to orphans and mollusks. One of these orphans is a nameless boy, eventually called Peter. Together with Peter’s companion......


Net-Work: Weaving a Human-Nature Connection - theHumm April 2024

By Adrian Baker

Beneath the forest floor, networks of mycorrhizal fungi connect trees together in a symbiotic system of exchange that supplies water, minerals, and other nutrients. This subterranean web of connective tissue was the inspiration for Net-Work — my textile-based participatory installation project that opens at the Mississippi Valley Textile Museum on April 27.

I initiated Net-Work at the beginning of 2020 via email and social media posts, inviting contributors to make long yarn or textile-base......


Perth Festival of the MaplesTime to Celebrate Lanark County “Gold”! - theHumm April 2024

It’s the annual rite of spring. Maple syrup season is upon us once again as we prepare to celebrate our region’s most famous agricultural commodity — sweet, savoury maple syrup! Our local maple syrup producers are the stars of the show at the Perth Festival of the Maples being held on Saturday, April 27 from 9am until 4pm in downtown Perth.

Ever since local businessman Vic Lemieux organized the first event close to 50 years ago, Perth has been the gathering place for this annual occa......


Annual Trashure Hunt
Help Clean Up Perth’s Streets on April 20
- theHumm April 2024

Perth invites you to join the Trashure Hunt on Saturday, April 20. Back for a third year, this town-wide clean-up event will not only help beautify the Town, but will bring together the community in a fun, family-friendly way! Organized by a group of dedicated volunteers, the event is sponsored by the Town of Perth and Climate Change Advisory Panel.

“Spring is here, and it’s the perfect time to shake things up and clean up our incredible town together,” says Sadie Brule, event or......


“Bunny’s Having a Pah-ty” - theHumm April 2024

By Glenda Jones

When we were kids and we’d drive past a house with lots of cars in front, my Mom would say: “Bunny’s having a pah-ty and we didn’t get our invitation”. I think it was from a song or a story, or maybe it was simply an expression from her bridge club, but it’s stuck with us.

The very word “party” stirs excitement. I haven’t hosted one in many years, but love the idea of getting friends together, spending days making favourite foods, setting out the best glasses, finding all the serving dishes, cl......


Samantha Martin & Delta Sugar - theHumm April 2024

By Seamus Cowan

I love my job. I get to hire incredibly talented and soul-stirring musicians and put them on our stage for you to enjoy! Samantha Martin played The Cove for the first time a few years ago with the Blues on the Rideau Series, and I personally haven’t found another band that does what she does any better. Sure, there are many other amazing acts, but Sam has a thing that reaches deep. She blacks out. She tranc......


More Fun, Less Stuff for a Better World - theHumm April 2024

By Mike Nickerson

“Inherent within the challenges of peak oil and climate change is an extraordinary opportunity to reinvent, rethink and rebuild the world around us.” — Rob Hopkins

One key to a post-carbon world is a thriving, resilient, internally uplifting society.

Our potential for life-based fulfillment is enormous. It can be supported with quality food provided for successive generations through a mindful cycling of nutrient elements through local soils. Shelters can be constructed so that hea......


A Difficult Year - theHumm April 2024

By Glenda Jones

The Mississippi Mills Film Society is ending their season in April on a high note with the “puckish comedy” A Difficult Year. Presented to much acclaim at the Toronto Film Festival, this French language film offers a unique solution to several societal issues, tied up in one neat package. Perhaps linking up with a conscientious objectors’ rally simply for the food and beer isn’t a viable solution, but for two friends looking to solve their debt crisis it’s the way to go. Join them as they get caught up in the action, leading (maybe) to romance and debt reduction. For sure, it’ll lead to a......


Ottawa Bach Choir presents Leipzig 1723 - theHumm April 2024

The JUNO award-winning Ottawa Bach Choir presents the final concert of its 22nd season, Leipzig 1723, on Saturday, May 4 at 8pm at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church in Ottawa. The concert features exquisite German baroque cantatas by the candidates for Thomaskantor in Leipzig: Telemann, Graupner and Bach. Works include Telemann’s Singet dem Herrn ein neues Lied, TWV 7:30; Graupner’s Aus der Tiefen rufen wir, GWV 1113/23a; and Die Elenden sollen essen, BWV 75, the first cantata Bach composed for his new post as Thomaskantor in Leipzig.

Accompanied by Ensemble Caprice baroque orchestra, ......


Be an Odd One In
Try Out for The Wizard is… Odd?!
- theHumm April 2024

By Susan Macaulay

Community theatre isn’t for everyone — except here in Lanark County and environs, as evidenced by the number of productions successfully staged across the region every year!

Ottawa Valleyans have demonstrated how much they appreciate local shows by turning out en masse to see them. Last year, for example, Spinning Yarns: The Millworkers’ Musical sold out all six performances at the Almonte Old Town Hall two weeks in advance, and audiences raved about the show after they saw it. Last mont......


A Fourth Season for the Blakeney Project - theHumm April 2024

By David Hinks

A few days in early March when the daytime temperatures reach double digits, and gardeners (including myself) start to lose their minds. Have I got a protected outdoor spot where I could plant a few pea and spinach seeds? I need to get my tomato plants started yesterday! Where can I get bags of compost that are not frozen?

Time for a reality check! I go to the Environment Canada report for Ottawa and zero in on average temperatures for today’s date. Average highs for early March are less than 2°C. My......


Wind Rock Ridge Art Gallery - theHumm April 2024

Wind Rock Ridge Art Gallery is a new art gallery located in the picturesque town of Smiths Falls. The gallery and artists’ studio is a unique experience for visitors and artists alike. The gallery has an impressive collection of fine artworks and one-of-a-kind items, including fibre art. It currently represents the works of seven artists including owner Shelley Leach, who opened Wind Rock Ridge in January of 2024.

Shelley is known for her wilderness and landscape painting and has been a practic......


PSW “Living Classroom” - theHumm April 2024

Arnprior Regional Health is participating in a unique “Living Classroom” program for Personal Support Workers with Willis College. With a hybrid learning environment, local clinical placement at the Grove Long-Term Care Home, over $15,000 in incentives and guaranteed immediate employment with ARH upon graduation, this program aims to entice future PSWs to Arnprior and the Valley.

This 30-week hybrid program will see students studying online for the theory portion of their coursework and attending in-person skills sessions at the Old Grove building in Arnprior. The 8-week clinical plac......


JW-Jones at ABC Hall - theHumm April 2024

On Thursday, April 25 at 7:30pm, catch the award-winning Ottawa blues artist JW-Jones live in concert. For the second year in a row he will bring his old-style blues sound with that contemporary twist to the ABC Hall stage in Maberly. A gifted guitarist and singer/songwriter who is the epitome of an “old soul” blues man, JW-Jones is also an artist who truly engages with his audiences, bringing his warmth and humorous personality to the stage.

As the renowned blues man Buddy Guy himself said: “thi......


Book Now for the Union Hall Pancake Breakfast - theHumm April 2024

On April 7, bring the family and reconnect with your neighbours in the cozy atmosphere of this community hub and landmark. The Union Hall Pancake Breakfast is an annual fundraiser organized for the benefit of the local community.

Enjoy generous portions of pancakes, ham or sausages, baked beans and blueberries, with maple syrup (courtesy of Fortune Farms), accompanied by fruit juice, tea and Equator coffee. A gluten-free option is available.

Book your time slot through Tickets Please (, 485–6434). and be sure of a seat to avoid the line-up, or worse — going home h......


MVFN’s Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary - theHumm April 2024

By — Joachim Moenig is Chair of the MVFN–CBNB Committee

Since 2007, the Cliff Bennett Nature Bursary (CBNB) has helped secondary school students entering post-secondary studies in a natural field make their story a good one. The CBNB operates within the auspices of the Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists (MVFN) program.

Back in 2007 Cliff’s family, friends and fellow MVFN members donated funding to launch the CBNB to honour the former teacher and well-known local naturalist on his birthday. If you wish to learn more about Cliff’s amazing life, r......


One Man’s Misguided Mission - theHumm April 2024

By Lise Balthazar

On March 6, 1890, Eugene Schieffelin — bird enthusiast and heir to a successful pharmaceutical company — went to Central Park in New York with his servants, where they proceeded to open several cages and release 80 European starlings imported from England at great expense. Mr. Schieffelin was chairman of the American Acclimatization Society, a group founded with the intention of introducing to North America “such foreign varieties of the animal and vegetable kingdom as may be useful or interesting.”



April is Parkinson’s Awareness Month
Parkinson’s Awareness Month Events
- theHumm April 2024

The Parkinson’s Community Network (PCN) was established in 2023 to raise funds and awareness to help address the needs of people with Parkinson’s and those who care for them. Parkinson’s Awareness Month, which is recognized around the world, helps to promote the message that with the support and treatment they need, people can live well with Parkinson’s. This is more important than ever, as Parkinson’s Disease (PD), continues to be the fastest-growing neurological disease in the world as well as the leading cause of disability. Many people recognize the motor issues, but most people with ......


“Roll Out the Rugs” at MERA - theHumm April 2024

For the entire month of April, the MERA Weavers will have their work on display at the Schoolhouse in McDonalds Corners. Everyone is invited to attend the show’s opening event on Sunday, April 7 from 2–4pm.

The MERA Weavers group was started back in 2003 by Ellen Good and Ankaret Dean. They have continued to grow since their humble beginnings, and with a weaving studio now equipped with seven looms their newly renovated studio is busy throughout the year. “Roll out the Rugs” is ......


Join the Perth Youth Players - theHumm April 2024

Studio Theatre Perth is thrilled to announce the launch of season three of the Perth Youth Players! This exciting initiative is tailored for youth ages 10 to 17 and is designed to cultivate a new generation of community theatre enthusiasts.

Season Three workshops will take place on Saturday mornings at Studio Theatre, starting on Saturday, April 27 and running through June 15. Participants can look forward to a diverse program, ranging from the excitement of “Shakespeare Can be Fun” to......


Grow Food Where You Live! - theHumm April 2024

On Thursday, May 2, the Carleton Place Environmental Advisory Committee invites you to a talk by Lorraine Johnson, author of City Farmer. This inspirational talk will explore diverse and innovative ways to grow food in urban environments. Covering everything from front yards and boulevards to rooftops and public spaces such as parks and community gardens, this talk will encourage you to look at urban agriculture as a productive adventure that helps communities flourish. This event starts at 7pm up......


Fibre Artists’ Spring Fling
- theHumm April 2024

Out-of-the-Box Fibre Artists is hosting its ever-popular Fibre Spring Fling this year on Friday, May 3 and Saturday, May 4 — just in time to find that perfect Mother’s Day gift!

“We’re holdin......