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Poetry festival brings together talented wordsmiths from Ottawa and abroad

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Left: Moe Clark, photo by Nora Nathoo. Right: Stephen James Smith, photo by Bob Dixon.Left: Moe Clark, photo by Nora Nathoo. Right: Stephen James Smith, photo by Bob Dixon.

VERSeFest, Ottawa’s annual poetry festival, will take place from March 25-30.  In advance of this literary celebration, we spoke with acclaimed local poet David O’Meara, who is also the artistic director of the festival. Apartment613: The first VERSeFest took place in 2011. What was the aim of starting this annual poetry gathering, given that Ottawa already has a writers festival? David O’Meara: Ottawa has a very large, diverse poetry community, with over a dozen reading and performance series organized through the year.  Not a week goes by that there aren’t at least three... | Continue reading article

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Celebrate the late Dennis Tourbin with ABCDelevision at Club SAW

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Screen shot of Dennis Tourbin, Canadian poet and painter reading Bay Street Ottawa as part of the Festival Of The Arts presentation Inset: The Visual Poets.Screen shot of Dennis Tourbin, Canadian poet and painter reading Bay Street Ottawa as part of the Festival Of The Arts presentation Inset: The Visual Poets.

The name says it all: ABCDelevision. Rather, to be clear, the written word doesn’t say it all-but absolutely that’s the point. ABCDelevision is actually pronounced “Abracadelevision” and it was a term Dennis Tourbin coined to describe the ‘magic’ of television: an ‘instant’ medium which beamed with unprecedented immediacy and simultaneity images and words, a message, directly into our homes. Fascinated by the power of different mediums to transform language and having dedicated his art to “an exploration of the complex visual dimensions contained within language” it’s unsurprising that his single... | Continue reading article

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Hidden Gems: 195 Elgin

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Photo by Maksim Apelfeld.Photo by Maksim Apelfeld.

As you walk down Elgin Street near Laurier, it is easy enough to get distracted and miss this week’s gem. It is by no means small, or hidden from view in any way. In fact it sits right along Elgin in one of the busiest parts of Ottawa. Yet it usually goes unnoticed. As you walk past it, your eye is usually drawn to its more imposing neighbours: the courthouse, the main City Hall building, or the office buildings across the street. And so it’s time to give some much... | Continue reading article

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Last day to support Jill Zmud’s “Small matters of life and death”

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Photo courtesy of jillzmud.comPhoto courtesy of jillzmud.com

If you’re a fan of local singer/songwriter Jill Zmud‘s work, you’ve got until the end of the day to jump in and support her indiegogo campaign. Her new record is a bit of an homage to an uncle she met for the first time through his recordings. It’s a fascinating story and we caught up with Jill to quickly give us the run-down of her project and the campaign. You can find all the details online here. Apt613: Can you tell us a bit more about your Uncle Eddie? Jill:... | Continue reading article

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Filed in: Interviews, Music

Best of: Meditation workshops in Ottawa

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Photo by émiliep on Flickr. All other photos are by Jason Yung, unless otherwise specified.Photo by émiliep on Flickr. All other photos are by Jason Yung, unless otherwise specified.

The art of meditation is a way of getting into touch with reality. The reason for it is that most civilized people are out of touch with reality – because they confuse the world as it is, with the world as they think about it, talk about it, and describe it. -Alan Watts So you’ve decided to try out meditation. Perhaps you’ve just suffered a personal crisis and you need to find some calm. Perhaps you’ve heard about the health benefits. Or maybe you’re just plain curious – for whatever... | Continue reading article

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How to find a worthwhile unpaid internship? Jackpine Digital offers some clues

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Photo by coleydude on Flickr.Photo by coleydude on Flickr.

Stagnating youth employment has led to the rise of internships. Some say organizations are cashing in on those desperate for experience and many people are critical of this trend. But there are several worthwhile opportunities to intern here in Ottawa, even unpaid ones; you just have to know where to look. Ottawa’s Jackpine, a mission-driven strategy and design studio, is offering one such opportunity. Their internships offer the chance to get involved in a highly creative team of hard working misfits. However, it is unpaid work. Jackpine’s CEO, Liam Mooney,... | Continue reading article

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Filed in: General, News & Ideas

Write On Ottawa: I am an author and so can you

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Lily and Jack. Photo by Lily Michailidis.Lily and Jack. Photo by Lily Michailidis.

Do you have that abandoned manuscript lingering in your drawer yearning to be picked up again? Well, local author Matthew Stella had one too but has spent the past two and a half years completing the biography of friend Thom Gulino. As such, he is no stranger to the ups and downs of the fickle writing process. It has taken him from Daegu, South Korea where he was working as an English teacher, to Eurasia on long train rides across Russia. Finally, upon his return to Ottawa in July 2013,... | Continue reading article

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Streetscape Memory Bank: The Ottawa Leather Goods Company

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Exterior of the third Ottawa Leather Goods store located at 131 Sparks Street, 1948. All photos provided by The Ottawa Leather Goods Co.Exterior of the third Ottawa Leather Goods store located at 131 Sparks Street, 1948. All photos provided by The Ottawa Leather Goods Co.

“The store of 1001 gifts”. By 1938, this was the slogan George Wolf used for Ottawa Leather Goods, a store that sold luggage, handbags, and tourist novelty items on Sparks Street. At the height of the Great Depression in 1931, Wolf made a daring decision: he would move his ten year old business from 92 Bank Street in the Capitol Theatre Building to the former Home Bank building at 126 Sparks, next to what would be the Hardy Arcade. And thus began what is now an 83 year connection to... | Continue reading article

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New boutique will help EcoEquitable better serve Ottawa

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Betty (left), a seamstress with EcoEquitable who has started a small business creating African fashions with her husband, and  Ayseh, the Home Decor Assistant with EcoEquitable. All photos by SBHale.Betty (left), a seamstress with EcoEquitable who has started a small business creating African fashions with her husband, and Ayseh, the Home Decor Assistant with EcoEquitable. All photos by SBHale.

A local social enterprise is hoping to broaden its capacity while better serving the community through a brand new boutique. For twelve years, EcoEquitable has provided employment and skills training to immigrant and underemployed women through small-scale textile recycling. While participants develop valuable skills to achieve financial independence, a huge amount of what would have been waste gets repurposed through the program. Last Thursday, the organization opened the doors of its new space to show off a new boutique that will feature creations generated by the program. I had the... | Continue reading article

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Get your geek on this weekend at the Wonder Geeks Activate anniversary party

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Members of Wonder Geeks Activate at FanExpo 2013. Photo from wondergeeksactivate.com.Members of Wonder Geeks Activate at FanExpo 2013. Photo from wondergeeksactivate.com.

They’re everywhere. Learning in our universities, working in our restaurants and bars: some of them have even infiltrated the government and are working on the Hill. You’ve probably passed them in the streets, brushed up against them on the bus, and even shared the intimate confines of an elevator with them. All the while never guessing that beneath their veneer of normalcy lays a secret self… It’s true. Geeks live among us! They come from all walks of life and there are as many different types of geek as there... | Continue reading article

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