The Races Are On!!
The OpenMinder has been following the development of the BMX track in City Park and
with the Grand Opening on the June 26 & 27 weekend we were fortunate to catch Frank
Astofooroff of Silver Barn Bike & Board, who has been involved with the track from the
start, for an interview.
Argosy Construction, Bannert Readimix Ltd., Canpar, Cantex, City
of Grand Forks,
Emcon, Grand Forks Construction Services, Pacific Abrasives, Phoenix 4 Elements, Silver
Barn Bike & Board and more individuals than can be printed here put time, supplies,
equipment or money into making this happen, setting an example for others to follow. Way to go!
OpenMinder: Something like the BMX track doesn’t come about overnight. When did the idea first come about?
Frank Astofooroff: We started this whole thing about 2 years ago.
OM: How did you get it started?
Frank: You get all your plans going after you find an actual piece of property.
OM: Did you have to approach the city for this and how did they respond?
Frank: The whole concept was completely new, so they basically wanted some proof that it was viable, that it was going to work. We talked to Neill Krog and Steve Burt and Phil Taylor, who was the city administrator. At first we tried to get it behind the ball diamonds and the arena, but they suggested that the city park area would be better for them.
OM: I guess there had to be some extra benefits to this other than the kids riding around on their bikes?
Frank: Definitely. The
whole idea was to find things for the kids
to do. Every kid’s got a
bike, it’s not like you have to go out to buy some special equipment.
And the downtown core,
I feel that the people are
really going to get some benefit out of it, once the bigger races are
coming in. The provincial
race that will be coming up
at the middle of August, will probably bring about 300 people into town.
Then, with a national race, which we are hoping for the following year, that would bring about 1,000 people into town for 3 days. That’s something we haven’t really pushed with the downtown core yet, but we’re going to approach the Chamber of Commerce just to make them aware of what’s happening, so we can get some support. We are a non-profit society, so there is no money going into our pockets. Whatever we get is going back into the tracks.
OM: As a non-profit society, a lot of effort must have come from a lot of people for free?
Frank: Yes, there’s been hundreds and hundreds of hours that have gone into it, donated.
OM: What is the difference between a BMX bike and, say, a mountain bike?
Frank: BMX bikes all have 20″ wheels. The frame size would be bigger for the bigger kids, but the wheels are all 20″ and there is no gears on them, just one rear hand brake, whereas the mountain bike has multiple gears.
OM: With all the work that has gone into this project, and looking at international competition, how does our track compare to other tracks on the circuit?
Frank: The people from out of town that have seen it so far, say that ours is as good, if not better, than most.
OM: As in length, width, that kind of thing, or… ?
Frank: Basically, when we started designing it, we kind of went for the gusto, where it’s big enough to hold a national race.
OM: That brings Grand Forks in touch with the world. How does one get into being a BMX racer?
Frank: As far as age limits
go, kids from about 4 years can do
it, and it goes right up to
50+ categories. The way it works, kids are racing against kids their own
age, and once they
buy a licence they kind of
get a little more serious about it. There is actually 3 categories per
age group that they
race, there is a novice,
intermediate and expert
category. In the novice category, you have to win 8 times, that bumps you up into the intermediate, then there you have to win 15 races. There is quite a big jump once you get into the expert group, the competition gets quite tough. And again, you are not
seeing a 6 year old racing a 12 year old.
OM: You mentioned something about a licence, does it cost anything?
Frank: Once you get a
licence, you join the Canadian BMX Association,
which allows you to move up
to other categories. If you don’t have a licence, you are racing novice
all the time. The cost of a
licence is $50 per season, that’s good for one year. We keep track of
all their points and
they are submitted to Prince
George, which is the head
office of the Canadian BMX Association. Everything is tabulated, and with the licence there is a monthly catalogue magazine that everybody gets and points are listed there so you can rate yourself among all the kids in Canada.
OM: When the track is not being used, can anybody use it with any kind of bike?
Frank: Yes, the track is open at all times, only thing we want you to do is wear a helmet.
It’s a Wonderfull World
I’ve been hanging around on this planet for quite some time now and I hardly ever watch news or read the paper because it depresses me. There is certainly more bad than good news, or so it seems. But when I look closely at what’s happening in my own little world, I am realizing more and more that the world isn’t all bad. Every once in a while my faith in the good of humanity is being restored by some person out there who was just plain nice to me for no apparent reason, or someone that went out of his or her way to help a fellow citizen, when another person would have just “minded their own business”. The more I think about that, the more events like that come into my mind and that makes me believe that just maybe we are entering a “new millenium” and that there is hope after all! Here is one of those “little miracles”:
When Brian (McAndrew, he’s
my husband and co-owner of this publication)
and I moved here a few years
ago, we had so much stuff that we decided to bring some of our
to store in our new house a
week before we moved with our 3 kids, 2 cats, a hamster, a few budgies
ton of plants and “more
belongings” (a wise
decision!). Brian and a friend of ours who was helping him were not even unloading the “belongings” into our new (empty) house for half an hour, when Murphy Clarke, a neighbour who has since moved, shows up with a tray full of cookies and some home-made lemonade with the comment “I thought you might like some refreshments,” a
gesture which certainly was much appreciated!
When Brian told me about this, I thought it was a good omen, but what happened after we just moved in, blew my mind. The very next day after moving in – we had barely had our breakfast – another neighbour, Harold Brown (a long-time resident of Grand Forks) walks into our driveway and asks Brian “Are you gonna do something with that field?”, pointing at what we now know is a few acres of alfalfa/hay mix growing on our 10-acre lot. Well, before we knew it, Brian got a (4 hour) crash course in field irrigation, how to set it up, where our irrigation pump was and how to turn it on (we didn’t have a clue!) and a lot of necessary details about that kind of stuff in general.
Since then Harold has always been available for advice on anything that had to do with “farming” or even things like fixing the handle on our espresso maker! I tell you, we just love our neighbours and we are glad we moved to Grand Forks, a place that we call “little paradise”.
Brian’s note:There are too many other events of the same nature for me to mention all of them, but the most recent incident was last week. Another neighbour, Ron Rohatynchuk, appeared at my door, just after I had driven home, with tweezers and fuse in hand. He’d followed me home and noticed my brake lights were out and before I knew what was going on, he had found and replaced the faulty fuse. The seatbelt warning bell now works too. What can I say Ron but “Thanks”.
I am sure there are a lot of you people out there that have had a kind soul turn to you at one time or another and made your day bright. If you have a “little miracle” that you would like to share, put it into an envelope titled “Wonderful World” and drop it into one of our drop-off boxes at Pharmasave or Value Drug Mart or send to: OpenMinder, S320 C17 RR#1, G.F. V0H 1H0 or e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Just for a laugh!
If a new-born lice lands on a leaf of lettuce, is it a new lice on leaf?
A guy goes to a psychiatrist. “Doc, I keep having these alternating recurring dreams. First I’m a teepee; then I’m a wigwam; then I’m a teepee; then I’m a wigwam. It’s driving me crazy. What’s wrong with me?” The doctor replies:
“It’s very simple: you’re two tents.”
A hungry lion was roaming through the jungle looking for something to eat. He came across two men. One was sitting under a tree and reading a book; the other was typing away on his typewriter. The lion quickly pounced on the man reading the book and devoured him. Even the king of the jungle knows that readers digest and writers cramp.
Confusius say “Man who fall over cliff jumps to final conclusion.”
If a man with multiple personalities threatens with suicide, do you have a hostage situation?
When a cow laughs, does milk come out of its nose?
I have gone to find myself. If I get back before I return, keep me here.
Editorial Teen Solutions Winners
The great and venerable Sufi sage Mullah Nasrudin, once raced through Baghdad on his donkey, galloping as fast as the poor beast could travel. Everybody got excited and people rushed into the streets to find out why the philosopher was in such a great hurry.
“What are you looking for, Mullah?” somebody shouted.
“I’m looking for my donkey!” Nasrudin answered.
Like most Sufi jokes, this one seems calculated only to annoy us, like a Marx Brothers routine that doesn’t quite succeed in being funny. Actually, Nasrudin had a strong tendency to act out his parables, and he was merely dramatizing that the answer we are looking for resides inside ourselves.
I chose to quote this Sufi parable because it seemed to fit with the theme of the first place winner of our “Teen Solutions” contest.
Due to several factors, including the OpenMinder being a new publication
and, I think, young people’s indifference, we had more prizes than entries.
Copies of the submissions, with the names removed, were given to 6 separate and impartial judges who marked them in the order of first, second, and third place. Here are the results:
First Place – winner of the AM/FM Bicycle Radio/Headlight/Horn from Pharmasave: Ashley Reekie, age 15 of Grand Forks.
“One of the main problems facing teens in the Boundary is peer pressure… Peer pressure is most effective on people with lower self esteem It is not solely a youth problem, adults are subject to peer pressure as well… it takes someone who is strong in their convictions someone who dares to be different you need to ask yourself some basic questions Is what I’m doing really right for me?”
Second Place – winner of the Mini Stereo Cassette Player from Andy’s TV Centre Ltd.: Lydia McAndrew, age 13 of Grand Forks.
Third Place – winner of the
$10.00 gift certificate for Grand
Forks Dollars & Sense
from Grand Forks District United Way Society: Sandra McAndrew, age 14 of
Winners 2 and 3 were recognized for suggesting arts and music as an addition to sports in a youth centre type of setting.
If you are an elementary school student you could win $5 by telling where was this picture taken? Include your name,
grade, school, and phone number. Drop off your entry at Value Drug Mart, or at Pharmasave Grand Forks. The first
correct answer drawn from our hat will win the $5 prize.
Dynamic Design, a hot new graphic design company in Grand Forks came up with the design for a new button to be introduced at this year’s Boundary Showcase Trade Show that will let others know that you are “Proud to be in the Boundary”!
Admission to this year’s Trade Show is free again, so bring the whole family and get your Souvenir Program for the Passport to Fun draws and a chance to win GREAT prizes. Visit with your friends! Eat and have fun! Get answers to those questions you’ve been waiting to ask!
Tips for exterior painting
Did you know that latex paint is really the best paint to use on exterior surfaces? This is because the chemical nature of latex paint allows it to remain flexible, whereas oil paint becomes brittle over time. Due to the influence of the weather more problems occur on exterior surfaces than interior ones. The freeze/thaw cycle can have devastating effects on decks, for instance, if the top of the planking boards are protected but the undersides and edges are left uncoated. Why? Moisture from the ground penetrates the wood and this, pulled through the wood by the warmth of the sun, peels and cracks the coating in the process. The solution is to protect ALL
surfaces with stain before building the deck.
Peeling galvanized metal
eaves troughs are another common problem.
Never use oil paint directly
on these. Prime with a latex galvanized metal primer first, then top
either oil or latex paint.
If the eaves troughs are new,
they should be allowed to weather before painting to remove the oily film. There is some primers that will allow you
to skip the weathering process.
Metal garage doors should be painted with latex, not oil paint, as latex paint has more elasticity to deal with
temperature changes. Wood garage doors should be primed, then painted with latex paint, including the back and
especially the bottom edges, which have contact with the ground moisture.
Aluminium and vinyl siding or brick can be painted with latex paint. If you do have bubbling or peeling paint, you
must scrape it thoroughly to remove all loose bits before repainting. All dust from scraping as well as dirt or mildew
must be washed from the surface by hand or pressure washer. If you don’t do this important step, the peeling will
continue soon after you have repainted.
Trans Canada Trail
Soon now, a local group of volunteers will receive a license of tenancy from B.C. Assets and Lands, a Crown corporation, to manage the stretch of the abandoned CPR railbed between Grand Forks and Eholt. This follows the announcement last fall by the provincial government that the entire former CPR line has been dedicated to the Trans
Canada Trail project. For locals, working initially under the banner of the Boundary Rails to Trails Society, it is the culmination of years of effort begun when the railroad was abandoned in 1991. Upon completion, the Trans Canada Trail will be the longest continuous trail in the world, stretching 15,000 km from New-foundland to Vancouver
Island and north to the Arctic Ocean. The local management group will operate as a subcommittee of the West Kootenay Regional Council, a division of B.C. Trails. While drawing upon the national, provincial, and regional organizations for support and expertise, actual management decisions remain in the hands of local volunteers.
In addition to drafting a management plan, the local group recently completed a physical survey and polled adjacent landowners. Actual improvements to the grade such as signage, controlled access points, and user facilities will begin soon. Volunteer labour by local users will be supplemented over the summer by one and possibly two Environmental Action Teams, a provincial make work grant program that provides supervised employment opportunities for youth. Broad community involvement is crucial to the success of this exciting project which will provide superior recreation
opportunities for local users as well as a world class tourist attraction with huge potential for drawing visitors to our region. Local organizers will be calling on area businesses, associations, and individuals for contributions of materials, labour, and/or funding. For more information and to learn how you can help, phone David at 442-3966 or Chris at 442-2620 or stop by the recreation department office at the arena for brochures. Trails BC can be reached at 1-888-908-7245. You can contact Trans Canada Trail Foundation at 1-800-465-3636 or at www.tctrail.ca. In the meantime, explore the new trail on foot, by bike or on horseback and discover what all the excitement is about!
(pronounced ray-key) is a Japanese word meaning “universal life energy, the energy which is all around us”. This system, the “Usui Shiki Ryoho Reiki” was born out of the experience and dedication of Dr. Mikao Usui. Dr. Usui was a Japanese christian educator who, in the 1800’s responded to a challenge from his university students by
undertaking an extensive study of the healing phenomena of history’s greatest spiritual leaders. Through travel, study research and meditation, he evolved a healing system based on ancient Buddhist teachings written in Sanskrit. He spent the rest of his life practicing and teaching this method of natural healing, which involved attunement to the energy and the laying on of hands.
Reiki is a holistic therapy that addresses all issues of the mind, body and spirit. Reiki goes beyond the symptoms and treats the root cause of disease and disorder. Reiki helps us maintain balance in our own health and is adjusted naturally to individual needs. Reiki is for those people who wish to take more responsibility for their health and it is for those who want to live more holistically. Reiki is a powerful health care method and it reduces stress and tension and promotes relaxation. Reiki works as a complement to mainstream medicine and has been shown to speed up recovery from surgery. Reiki provides persons with the means of maintaining balance in their own health and that of their families and friends. Usui Shiki Ryoho Reiki, the original form as taught by Dr. Usui, is a natural healing art which uses Reiki in these ways.
Reiki is not a religion, cult or organization. It is not a psychic healing nor is it faith healing. It is also not a form of mind control, wishful thinking, meditation technique or hypnosis and it does not require the removal of one’s clothing. For more info. contact Eva at 442-3604.
**The Boundary Artisans Market needs a logo. You could win $50 and a one-year membership with the Boundary Artisans Market co-operative, if your design is chosen. Send your entries to: Boundary Artisans Market, Box 806, Grand Forks, B.C. V0H 1H0
or e-mail to email@example.com
**”A Little R&R” is a student theatrical production happening at the auditorium at G.F.S.S. on June 24th, 25th & 26th at 7 pm. Tickets are $5/adults, $3/students, available at the door.
On October 18th, 1998 at approx. 8:45 am Marie Radmore died serving her God. She was ringing the church bell when it broke loose falling upon her and, sadly, fractured her skull resulting in her death. She was well known for her cooking and baking in Greenwood and Grand Forks and surrounding areas as well as her love of the people she took to her heart. Those same people are holding a commemorative memorial service under the “new bell tower” at St. Judes Anglican church in Greenwood on June 19th, 1999 at 3 pm to remember her devotion to God and those she loved. It is hoped
that all who knew her will attend. There will be coffee and sandwiches provided afterward.