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Tour de blogosphere: Meet the blogger who is improving his community one post a time

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Photo courtesy of West Side Action from post: "Albert Street reconstruction – Back to the Future?"Photo courtesy of West Side Action from post: "Albert Street reconstruction – Back to the Future?"

Eric Darwin is one of the best reporters in Ottawa covering urban affairs.  Not bad for someone who does not call himself a  journalist, who is not part of the mainstream and alternative press, and who only launched his must-read blog West Side Action after retiring seven years ago. In today’s Internet age, news reporting is being radically redefined.  Twenty years ago, if you wanted to know about development projects in the National Capital Region or planning decisions at City Hall, a daily newspaper, local TV news show or a talk... | Continue reading article

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Radical Orations for Nuit Blanche Ottawa+Gatineau

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Image from the Radical Orations project by the Think Tank that has yet to be named.Image from the Radical Orations project by the Think Tank that has yet to be named.

With only one day left until the National Capital’s biggest night-long art party, now would be a good time to get familiar with some of the artistic projects that are going to be happening on Saturday night (if you haven’t done so already). The Nova Express Kiosk (Byward Market Zone, at George & William) will have a series of projects curated by Michael Davidge. Presented by the City of Ottawa’s Art Centres, the artists included are Guillermo Trejo (Ottawa), Dominique Sirois (Montreal), Allison Rowe (Toronto), Gerald and Maas (Ottawa), and the Think... | Continue reading article

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Sook-Yin Lee plays with memory and narrative in two Ottawa exhibits

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Artist Sook-Yin Lee, Photo: Caroline RyanArtist Sook-Yin Lee, Photo: Caroline Ryan

Sook-Yin Lee is a force to be reckoned with. She’s a musician, writer, director, actor, broadcaster, and visual and performance artist. I caught up with her while she was in town for the opening of her new photography exhibit We Are Light Rays and the one-night performance of her multimedia work How Can I Forget? We’re seated in the exhibition: intimate, darkened and close “a strange space-room” as Lee describes it. On the wall is the photographic series; back-lit displays on light boxes that run in a line around the... | Continue reading article

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Write On Ottawa: Local blogger pens parenting guide for new mothers

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Katina Michelis and her two daughters Gia, left, and Eva, right.Katina Michelis and her two daughters Gia, left, and Eva, right.

Life during pregnancy and with a new baby can be wonderful – and overwhelming and isolating too. With her new book You’re Pregnant – Now What?, local blogger and author Katina Michelis gives a glimpse of what life during pregnancy is like, and what to expect with a newborn. “When I was pregnant with my first I had an idealized notion of pregnancy” says Michelis, a proud mother of two young girls.  However, after the first few idealized weeks passed, she realized that she was miserable. “Why does everybody else seem so... | Continue reading article

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Video of the Week: What I Do by The Joynt and Maya Mayne

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Ottawa rapper the Joynt just released the music video for his anti-bullying song “What I Do”. It’s possibly the most inspirational rap music video the city has seen in a while. A rapper who stutters in his normal speech but interestingly does not stutter when he raps, Peter Joynt has been giving talks at local schools about stuttering and what it takes to get by being different. He provides students with a role model and demonstrates how to use rap to deal with the things life throws your way. “I... | Continue reading article

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Write On Ottawa: Growing hope from the grieving soil of Ground Zero

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Ground Zero

The phone call in 2008 may have been the worst moment in Nicholas Gagnier’s life.  At the time things were improving for the local poet, whose life was returning to relative normalcy after years of substance abuse, homelessness and depression. Then came the horrific news that his friend Michelle Vachon had committed suicide. “I will never forget that phone call,” writes Gagnier in the new poetry anthology Ground Zero.  “It will ring in my ears until the day I die.” Dealing with intense grief, and trying to understand a death that “perpetually haunts me”, the... | Continue reading article

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Weekly News Quiz: September 16, 2013

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Photo courtesy of Mike Geiger on flickrPhoto courtesy of Mike Geiger on flickr

Think you are up to date about local happenings? Test your knowledge with our local news quiz, five questions designed to test whether you’ve been paying attention. How to score: 5 out of 5: News stud! I hear The Citizen is hiring… 4 out of 5: Cheater! You work at City Hall. 3 out of 5: Not bad, but you may want to check your #ottcity Twitter feed a little more often. 2 out of 5: Newspapers are dying, but you should still try to pick one up once in... | Continue reading article

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Tour de blogosphere: Interview with local blogger and writer Catherine Brunelle

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Photo of Catherine Brunelle courtesy of her blog Bumpyboobs.Photo of Catherine Brunelle courtesy of her blog Bumpyboobs.

In a previous post we profiled local writer Catherine Brunelle and her attempt to raise $3,000 to publish her debut novel The Adventures of Claire Never-Ending.  Incredibly, she smashed her fundraising goal in less than 24 hours, and has now collected more than double what she was originally hoping for.  We caught up with Catherine to discuss her Kickstarter campaign, her blog Bumpyboobs and her relationship with her readers.  Below is an email interview slightly edited for length and style. Apartment: 613 You met your Kickstarter funding goal in less than 24 hours.  How... | Continue reading article

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Weekend roundup: Cabaret ticket giveaway edition

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What will it be this weekend, Ottawa? Burlesque? A crowd-sourced musical bike ride? Fashion? House of PainT kicked off last night, and goes on all weekend long to celebrate their 10th anniversary. If you haven’t caught their Bboy and Bgirl breakdancing competition in years past, be sure to head down under the bridge on Saturday afternoon. There’s also music, dance parties and of course, live urban art. Ottawa Fashion Week is also entering its 10th season, getting underway on Friday – and although the main event is the runway shows,... | Continue reading article

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West side business comings and goings

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Photo from the Flying Banzini Facebook page.Photo from the Flying Banzini Facebook page.

There’s been lots of action on and around Wellington West these past few weeks. Here’s a rundown of moves, new business openings and future businesses along the strip. Tall Tree Cycles will be taking over the Red Chair Kids space this fall, around November. While the space doesn’t immediately seem bigger than their current space, they will benefit from a full basement where they can do work and store bikes. Since Alteriors moved to Old Ottawa South, I had heard many rumblings about a Starbucks moving into the space. A couple... | Continue reading article

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