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Ottawa's Latest and Greatest on Learning

Librarian in Residence: New year, new skills

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DIY Library

Jessica Green is a book addict and library card holder since the age of 3. She’s a librarian at the Ottawa Public Library and currently the Apartment613 Librarian-in-Residence, sharing a compendium of literary thoughts and tips. Ottawa is a very crafty place and only seems to be getting more so the longer I live here. If you have ever wanted to pick up anything from tatting to making pickles, there are books available here at the library covering a vast amount of creative endeavour. This is one of my favourite... | Continue reading article

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Black Squirrel Books celebrates Bookmas

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All photos by Kelly Hotte.All photos by Kelly Hotte.

Amidst yummy treats, friendly chatter, and the smell of freshly ground coffee,  the first annual Bookmas was held this past Saturday (December 19th) at Black Squirrel Books & Cafe. More than 110 bookworms participated in the community Secret Santa event that organizers Vaughan MacDonald and Alexandra Ekstrom referred to as “literature and giverature” – books and giving. Participants had been supplied with the first name and reading preferences of the person they were buying for. They then had to head into Black Squirrel, purchase a gift book, take it home, wrap it,... | Continue reading article

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Streetscape Memory Bank: The lost neighbourhood of Uppertown, Pt. 3

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Uppertown Feat

Read Part 1 and Part 2 of this series, or check out all of our Streetscape Memory Bank posts. Last time, we looked at the mix of housing and individuals who lived on the north side of Vittoria Street between Lyon and Kent. Now we continue our journey by looking at a remarkable set of houses and their notable inhabitants on Cliff Street and on Vittoria east of Kent. We’ll start with 25 Cliff Street, located in the middle of the street. As you can see from the photographs, there... | Continue reading article

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Get a quick shot of learning at the Westboro Brainery

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Some of the Westboro Brainery's upcoming classes: image from their website.Some of the Westboro Brainery's upcoming classes: image from their website.

Where can you get a nice dose of knowledge in one evening, is more social than watching another documentary on Netflix, and costs about the same as a night out anywhere? Whether you’re looking to break the routine, start a project, or have your eyes opened to something new, chances are you’ll find what you’re looking for at the Westboro Brainery. Relaunched in September, the Westboro Brainery offers crowd-sourced education on a wide range of subjects. The initiative, which is powered by the Dovercourt Recreation Centre, was inspired by the... | Continue reading article

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Streetscape Memory Bank: The lost Ottawa community of Uppertown, Pt. 2

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All photos from Library and Archives Canada.All photos from Library and Archives Canada.

Last time, we looked at the area of Uppertown now taken up by what is now 395 Wellington, or Library and Archives Canada. This time I’m interested in taking a look at some of the houses located on Lyon, the north side of Vittoria, Kent and Cliff Streets.  [Ed. note: Here's a Google Maps link to help orient you.] Here’s a snapshot of a section of a larger scale fire insurance plan that appears to have been created by the government in 1912 and is now is now in the... | Continue reading article

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Spotlight on domestic violence in November’s “Shine the Light” campaign

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The Heritage Building at City Hall, lit up purple for last year's Shine the Light. Photo courtesy of OCTEVAW.The Heritage Building at City Hall, lit up purple for last year's Shine the Light. Photo courtesy of OCTEVAW.

Shoppers in the Wellington West area may notice a new violet trend adorning storefronts this month, with a number of businesses choosing to decorate their storefronts with the colour and hand out purple pamphlets throughout the month of November. The Ottawa Coalition To End Violence Against Women (OCTEVAW) is running their annual “Shine the Light” campaign aimed at promoting discussion of the impact of intimate partner violence on women. The campaign, which has taken place with the support of Elgin Street businesses for the last three years, is expanding to... | Continue reading article

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Songwriting workshop offers invaluable insight

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North Easton speaks to the attentive crowd in advance of the performance portion of the evening. Photo by Terry Steeves.North Easton speaks to the attentive crowd in advance of the performance portion of the evening. Photo by Terry Steeves.

Whether you’re a novice, or the expert…a recording artist or a budding musician, the Ottawa Regional Writers Group Songwriting Sessions are every minute worth your time to check out. Formed by North Easton in August, 2014, the group serves as the Ottawa chapter of the Songwriters Association of Canada, and holds its workshops on a monthly basis. They are held at 6:30pm, the last Tuesday of every month, at the Sandy Hill Community Centre, and the cost is simply a donation of whatever one can spare, to help cover the... | Continue reading article

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Quench your thirst for politics, art and ideas at #Spur15

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Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat. Photo by Douglas Sprott on Flickr. All other photos from the Spur Ottawa website.Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat. Photo by Douglas Sprott on Flickr. All other photos from the Spur Ottawa website.

Clear your schedule this weekend – because Spur is well worth your time. On the heels of a new government’s swearing in, this Thursday through Sunday Spur Fest descends on the Capital and promises a medley of sophisticated dialogue. According to Festival Director Helen Walsh, Spur will provide opportunities for people to debate topics or issues that may be “provocative, informative, infuriating or just plain fun”. Folks of all walks of life and all political stripes are warmly welcomed, and can expect debates and conversations, lectures and readings from an... | Continue reading article

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Helping patients obtain medicinal green cards

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Photos from the National Access Cannabis Facebook page. Right: NAC Grand Opening ribbon cutting ceremony with CEO Gulwant Bajwa and NAC member Shauna.Photos from the National Access Cannabis Facebook page. Right: NAC Grand Opening ribbon cutting ceremony with CEO Gulwant Bajwa and NAC member Shauna.

If you live or work in Ottawa’s trend-setting Hintonburg, chances are you’ve noticed the new addition to Wellington Street’s storefronts. National Access Cannabis (NAC), a BC-based company founded by former Public Servant Alex Abellan, recently opened its franchise doors this past July in the heart of Ottawa’s blooming Hipsterville.  The clean, haute-couture look, lined with an organic bamboo wood storefront sign is both inviting and surprising, given the negative stigma that is often associated with medicinal and recreational cannabis use. NAC’s mandate aims to do just that: deconstruct negative messaging... | Continue reading article

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What’s on your plate? Local food for thought about eating as a community

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Photo by Gordon D. Bonnar from the Apt613 Flickr pool.Photo by Gordon D. Bonnar from the Apt613 Flickr pool.

Alison Larabie Chase blogs about cooking and restaurants at This Dessert Life when she’s not herding cats, working in association communications, or traveling the world. A community cooking night. An apple festival. No less than three events involving local craft breweries. In case you hadn’t noticed, Support Local 2015 is focused primarily on facilitating discussions about food and growing. “The events this year particularly focus on the abundance of food that we’ve got in the Ottawa region, and highlight the many different ways we can come together to share food,... | Continue reading article

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