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January 2012 Archives

Jason Piper: The newest anglophone priest


Jason Piper is a pretty ordinary 33-year-old guy from Laval: He likes mob movies like Scarface and watches anything with Will Ferrell in it. To relax, he plays video games on his Xbox 360.

Jason Piper was just ordained as a priest for the Catholic Church a little over a week ago.

Father Jason Piper is the only anglophone priest to have graduated from Quebec seminary school this year.

He spoke with Sonali Karnick about his surprising journey from troublemaker to priesthood.

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Author Eva Stachniak on Catherine the Great

_DSC7875_small.jpgThere is a spy in Catherine the Great's palace in The Winter Palace, a new novel by Canadian author Eva Stachniak.

The story of Catherine the Great is told by an orphaned Polish girl, Varvara. Varvara finds herself in the service of the German Princess Sophie of Anhalt-Zerbst who goes on to become Catherine, one of the most powerful women in history.

Varvara adjusts to palace life, as does Catherine, by learning some painful lessons along the way about trust.

Eva Stachniak spoke with Sonali Karnick about Catherine's power and mystique.

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Columnist Ross "Worry" Murray

Thumbnail image for ross murray headshot.jpgOur columnist Ross Murray doesn't want to be a worrywart.

But he's worried that he is.

Especially when it comes to his kids -- and the dangers of everything from organized sports to bendy straws.

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Dave's Faves: "Does the book show up with the chainsaw?!"

We're opening the All in a Weekend vault and playing some of "Dave's Faves", Dave Bronstetter's best-loved clips from the last year.

Sunday we went back to a chat Dave had with Cathy Richan from the Literacy in Action organization in January of last year.

Cathy was holding a "Living Library" event in Sherbrooke.

As Dave discovers, at a Living Library event, the books are real people who chat with the book borrowers face-to-face about some very wide-ranging topics.

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Tourism Quebec - Sunday Update

Micheline Lachance from Tourism Quebec has yet another form of winter golf as well as the details on the Quebec City Winter Carnival and a wee nip of icewine.

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Feats of strength at the McGill Woodsmen Competition

The MacDonald Campus of McGill University was invaded by woodsman and woodswomen on Saturday at the 52nd Annual Woodsmen Competition .

Students from across Canada and the U.S. were busy doing everything from log-splitting to axe-throwing. 

Sonali Karnick talks to the president of the McGill University Woodsman team, Colin Murphy, about the competition and his "water boiling" practice.



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The Art of Eating Cookbook: Ed Behr and James Macguire

The Art of Eating magazine has been called a cult favourite for serious foodies.

Since launching as a humble newsletter in 1986, The Art of Eating has preached the merits of simple, fine food and quality ingredients. And 25 years later, the best of the magazine has been condensed into The Art of Eating Cookbook.

Ed Behr is the founding editor of The Art of Eating magazine and the author of the cookbook.

James Macguire is the former chef and owner of Passe-Partout in Montreal.

They spoke with Sonali about the book and their efforts in the food industry.


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The 2012 NHL All-Star Weekend

Hockey's biggest stars are in Ottawa right now for the NHL's all-star weekend.

Hockey Night in Canada's Eliotte Friedman will be covering tonight's skills competition and the all-star game Sunday on CBC TV.

With superstars Sidney Crosby and Alexander Ovechkin out of the lineup, the hometown stars can take their place.

Elliotte Friedman spoke with Sonali Karnick.


Hockey Night in Canada's Elliotte Friedman talks about NHL All-Star weekend, missing two of its biggest stars.

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Tourism Quebec - Saturday Update

Micheline Lachance from Tourism Quebec has the Saturday to-do list -- and it's a special "all outdoor" edition!


Lace up your skates! It's Tourism Quebec's Saturday activity suggestions.

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Dave Departs

Over the past months, we've been flooded with messages and well-wishes for Dave Bronstetter.

Dave has happily decided to retire after 33 years spent in broadcasting.

But don't worry, you haven't heard the last of Dave.

He's coming back for one last show!

Dave will be co-hosting All in a Weekend with Sonali Karnick on Saturday, February 18th, 2012.

Starting this weekend, we're opening the All in a Weekend vault and playing some of "Dave's Faves", Dave's best-loved clips from the last year.

Today we thought we'd pay homage to the NHL All-Star weekend with a hockey clip.

Here's part of Dave's chat from April of last year with the author Charles Foran about his biography of Maurice "The Rocket" Richard.

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Ars Poetica, a comedy

Ars Poetica Play.JPGWhen Arthur Holden is feeling masochistic, he says, he writes poems. When he's feeling funny, he writes stage plays. 

Now the Montreal actor and writer has combined the two in a play that opened this week. Ars Poetica is playing at the Bain St-Michel. It's about a struggling literary magazine here in Montreal.

Arthur Holden spoke to Sonali Karnick about the play.

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Morrin Centre lecture - Virgin Mary saves New France from Brits in 1711

notre-dame-des-victoires.jpgThe Virgin Mary kept a watchful eye over Quebec City back in the day. In fact, the people of New France credited her with saving the city from a massive British attack.

In 1711, a British armada was crossing the Atlantic with nearly as many soldiers and sailors as there were people in New France. Disaster struck - one of the worst nautical disasters in Canadian history.

Charles-André Nadeau is giving a lecture on the historical implications of the shipwreck at Quebec City's Morrin Centre. He's a retired Naval Officer and historian. Charles-André Nadeau spoke with Sonali Karnick. 

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Photo of Notre-Dame-des-Victoires in Quebec City, which was named after the event. (Courtesy of Christophe Finot, Wiki Commons.) 

Tourism Quebec: Sunday update

Micheline Lachance of Tourism Quebec talks light therapy in Montreal, dog sledding in Lanaudière and drag racing on snow.

Activity links:

Luminotherapy at Quartier des Spectacles, Montreal
Dog-sledding in Lanaudiere
Eastern canadian Snow Drag championship in La Sarre, Abitibi-Témiscaming 


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Ross Murray is a little irritable

grumpy clip art.jpgOur columnist Ross Murray has had a history of being a bit of a crankypants and a grouchypants. 

Strangely enough, he seems to be proud of his history of bad temper...

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(Grumpy face courtesy of


Daniel Baylis - around the world in 365 days

daniel in Laos boat.jpgAfter visiting 12 countries in 12 months, Daniel Baylis is back in Canada.

Daniel abandoned his nice apartment and cushy job at Montreal Tourism for the year-long travel adventure. On the road, he exchanged volunteer work for food and accommodation.

The last time we spoke with Daniel, he was in Israel working on a goat farm. Since then, he also travelled in Australia and Laos, so there were lots of stories to catch up on! Sonali Karnick spoke with Daniel in a two-part interview (part two is a web exclusive!).

Part 1:

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Part 2:

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(Photo courtesy of Daniel Baylis)

Tourism Quebec: Saturday update

Polar nights in Trois-Rivières, downhill on cross-country skis at Le Massif, and the Fête des neiges in Montreal with Micheline Lachance of Tourism Quebec.

Activity links:

Rendez-vous telemark at The Massif, Charlevoix
Nuits polaires in Trois-Rivières, Mauricie
Fête des neiges at Parc Jean-Drapeau, Montréal

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Snowshoes by lantern light

450px-Snowshoe2.jpgThe National Battlefields Commission is once again offering a special snowshoe tour on the Plains of Abraham in Quebec City. The tour takes you through the park, in the evening, by lantern light.  And as you cross the snowy Plains, you enter the past. 

Your guide is a sort of ghost. On the tour taken by the CBC's Rachelle Solomon, the guide was a character named Amédée Fournier. Back in 1912, he was the vice-president of the local snowshoeing club.

Before they headed out on the tour, Amédée and Rachelle tied the traditional ceintures fléchées around their waists, then strapped on traditional WOODEN snowshoes....

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Ski Report with Kevin Gasior

kevin gasior edited 2.JPGKevin Gasior talks about new ski equipment and specials for lift tickets on Quebec ski hills as well as the condition of the ski runs. It's a good weekend to hit the slopes!
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Kim Thuy's bestselling book "Ru" now in English

RU-Kim Thuy.jpgKim Thuy's RU came out in 2010 in French and won the Governor-General's award for fiction as well as a number of other prizes. It's just come out in English, in a version by award-winning translator, Sheila Fischman. RU is one woman's story of the fall of Vietnam.

It's told in short poetic vignettes that travel back and forth in time and place, like memories. It takes us from her childhood in a palatial home in Saigon to a refugee camp in Malaysia to a new life in Quebec.

Kim Thuy was born in Saigon herself, and came to Canada in 1979 at the age of 10. She spoke with Sonali Karnick in studio along with Sheila Fischman, who's opened up Kim Thuy's work to a new English audience.

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Robbie Burns Day - beyond haggis

Chef Alain Monod.JPGRobbie Burns Day is coming up this week so we thought we'd devote our Food Feature to the Scottish poet and his fans around the world. Scotland's favourite son - and the author of the New Year's Eve song 'Auld Lang Syne' - was born on January 25th in 1759.

There are suppers and celebrations across Quebec. But the one prepared by award-winning Chef Alain Monod goes beyond the traditional haggis, potatoes and turnips. Chef Monod (left, with haggis) will be cooking at The University Club of Montreal on Jan 27, as he has been for the past 24 years.

He spoke with Sonali Karnick about how he got involved in Scottish cuisine in the first place and explains his menu for the Robbie Burns Day Supper.

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Photo: Chef Alain Monod, M.A.

Harmonica harmonies of D'Harmo

d'Harmo Monde à utiliser hi res.jpgLevy Bourbonnais belongs to a band that's something of a musical rarity: a harmonica quartet. The quartet is called D'Harmo. As far as we know it's one of only two harmonica quartets on planet earth. (The other is a group called Svang in Finland.)

D'Harmo doesn't play the blues either - it's original music from Montreal. The quartet performs Saturday night at the MAI centre. This morning, Levy came into studio and gave Sonali Karnick a demo of all the types of harmonica he plays.

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Photo of D'harmo, courtesy of Conseil des arts de Montréal


Tourism Quebec: Sunday update

Micheline Lachance of Tourism Quebec talks about tommy cod in Ste-Anne-de-la-Pérade, an indoor approach to the Great Outdoors and the art of the ice hotel.

Activity links:

Pêche aux petits poissons des chenaux in Ste-Anne-de-la-Pérade, Mauricie
Salon national de la chasse et pêche at Galéries de la Capitale in Quebec City
Ice Hotel in Quebec City

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Dinosaurs are just misunderstood

586077_dinosaurs_skeletons.jpgFor this week's Freaky Sunday feature, we take a look at the myths surrounding dinosaurs. 

Our interview series is linked to McGill University's Freaky Fridays movie-and-a-lecture series which takes aim at common misconceptions about science.

Ph.D candidate Emily Bamforth leads the discussion with her lecture The Misunderstanding of Dinosaurs. The movie that goes with the lecture this week is 2010's thriller Dino-Shark.

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Racism takes centre stage in the play "Orphelins"

Dennis Kelly.jpgXenophobia, violence and family are some of the themes in Dennis Kelly's play Orphan. It hit the stage first in 2009 and got rave reviews at the Edinburgh fringe festival. This week, the play opened in French at La Licorne theatre in Montreal. Orphelin is intense and emotional but you might also find yourself laughing every now and then.

This is the first time that La Licorne will offer subtitles in English for some of the performances (or more accurately, surtitles). British playwright Dennis Kelly spoke to Sonali Karnick shortly after the premiere.

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Photo: Dennis Kelly, courtesy of LaLicorne theatre

Columnist Ross Murray and the honkin' huge TV

1087821_tv_addict.jpgOur weekly contributor Ross Murray takes a parental-guidance approach to television viewing.

But there's more than a little bit of self-interest in what he wants his kids to see.

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Winter classes for immigrants

The thought of shivering through a Canadian winter can be scary for new immigrants. But some new winter sports courses in Montreal help get newcomers outdoors and enjoying the cold. Adrienne Blattel developed the courses. She works at Association Récréative Milton-Parc. David Iglesias moved here from Spain a little more than a year ago and participated in the course last winter.

Adrienne and David spoke with Sonali Karnick about the experience.

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Adventure Tourism in the Gaspé

IMG_0756.jpgThe Gaspé is something of a paradise for people who like the outdoors. With mountains, rivers, lakes and the ocean, it's a big playground for outdoors enthusiasts. That's why the Cegep de la Gaspésie et les Iles de la Madelaine offers a one-of-a-kind program in Adventure Tourisim.

Some people point to the adventure tourism industry as one of the areas that have created jobs and growth in the Gaspé.

The CBC's Marika Wheeler spoke to Sonali Karnick about the program and its importance to the region.

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Tourism Quebec: Saturday update

Micheline Lachance of Tourism Quebec suggests: Montreal's Igloofest, Mont Saint-Gabriel for World Cup freestyle skiing, and the international car show in Montreal.

Activity links:

Igloofest at the Old Port in Montreal
FIS World cup in Mont Gabriel, Laurentians
Montreal International Auto show at the Palais des congrès in Montréal

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Food Magazine: whoopie pies and gluten-free

whoopie pies.jpgFor many of us, weekends are all about food. We have more time to cook it, to go to the market or supermarket, and to entertain. Of course, we love talking about food on All in a Weekend!

That's why we're pairing up with Radio-Canada's TV show L'épicerie. They cover everything:  the industry, the trends, and the foods we love. One of L'épicerie's team, Caroline Paulhus, writes for both the TV show and their food magazine AND their books. She'll be joining us every couple of weeks. This week, we discuss gluten-free foods for our main course and whoopie pies for dessert.

(Here's Caroline's favourite recipe for whoopie pies: Whoopie pie recipe.doc .)

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Hit the slopes with Kevin Gasior!

kevin gasior edited 2.JPGKevin Gasior has the details on the Freestyle Ski World Cup at Mont Saint-Gabriel this weekend as well as the ski conditions for Quebec.
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Take control of your money with Gail Vaz-Oxlade

Canada's colourful personal finance guru Gail Vaz-Oxlade joins Sonali Karnick to talk about her new book on how to become a woman of independent means - and how spoiled young spenders (the Princesses she meets on TV) will ultimately need her book!
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Life after a reality series

kary-ann deer.jpgBefore the holidays, we heard about a reality TV series shot in the First Nations community of Kahnawake. It's called Working It Out Together.

Six people spent six months getting fit and healthy, under the supervision of Olympic athlete Waneek Horn-Miller. They also dealt with some tough underlying issues.

Kary-Ann Deer (above) was one of the participants in the series and she spoke to Sonali Karnick about maintaining that progress after the cameras and the trainers went away. 

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Freaky Sundays - Future of quantum mechanics

existenz.jpgThis winter, you can either put on your skis and skates - or put on your thinking caps. McGill University is offering up a winter lecture series called Freaky Fridays. (Remember the Disney movie with the same name where mother and daughter trade places for a day?)

On Freaky Fridays at McGill, the university's scientists will examine the myths and realities of everything from genetics and love drugs to robots and dinosaurs. And you get a movie along with the lecture! (This week, it's Cronenberg's Existenz.)

We'll tag along with a series of interviews that we call - not surprisingly - Freaky Sundays. Bill Coish, assistant professor of physics at McGill, is first up in the series. He tackles the future of Quantum Mechanics. Not an easy ice breaker!

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Goethe-Institut's 50th anniversary in Canada

mechtild manus at carfree day 22.9.2010 .JPGIt's been 50 years since the Goethe-Institut opened up a small office in Montreal. The centre offers acess to German culture and language, and also fosters cultural exchanges. 

The institute's director, Mechtild Manus, came to Montreal after working for Goethe Institutes around the world - in Portugal, Egypt, Indonesia and her home country, Germany. She spoke with Sonali Karnick about the institute's anniversary celebrations and their  achievements since she arrived. (Photo: Mechtild Manus, centre, at Car-Free Day in 2010.)

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Ross Murray nominates ... long johns

long johns.jpgOur Townships columnist Ross Murray is back. And in the midst of winter, he turns his thoughts towards... long johns. Long underwear.

Ross argues it should be one of Canada's official 'things.'

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Talk soup

688695_hot_soup.jpgThere's nothing like a big bowl of soup on a cold day. It doesn't always have to come from a can and it doesn't always have to be complicated.

Jonathan Cheung, owner of Appetite for Books in Westmount and a chef himself spoke with Sonali Karnick. He covered the basics for a good stock and some good suggestions for the Quebec staple, pea soup.

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Ski report with Kevin Gasior

kevin gasior edited 2.JPGThe Ski Report's Kevin Gasior explains the concept behind "Rodeling" at Massif de Charlevoix and gives us the rundown on Saturday's events in Quebec.
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Quebec board game

qc_boite3D_lr.JPGSome of you may have received a board game for Christmas. And winter's certainly a great time to play them. The CBC's Rachelle Solomon in Quebec City has a story for us now about a successful new Quebec board game. It's a game of strategy that invites players to re-build Quebec City - from 1608 up to the present time. It's called, simply, Quebec.

The Chateau Frontenac, the Price building, the Capitole, the National Assembly - they're all on the board. Ironically, it's a Montreal publisher called the Scorpion Masqué that's behind the new game.

Rachelle Solomon met with historian and game designer Pierre Poissant-Marquis, as well as Christian Lemay, the CEO of Scorpion Masqué.

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Snow Village

Snowvillage.JPGIt is the snow fort to end all snow forts. The Snow Village just opened this week in Montreal's Jean-Drapeau Parc. It's not just an ice hotel, the village claims to be a replica of the city of Montreal made entirely out of ice and snow. There's a hotel, igloos and even a chapel if you want to have a January wedding instead of a June wedding.

Sonali Karnick went on a tour of the Snow Village with one of the people responsible for bringing the concept to Montreal, Yanick Tremblay. The village was just getting its finishing touches when Sonali went out to Parc Jean-Drapeau.

I met Yannick amid all of the snowmakers, chainsaws to carve the ice and snow and, yes a dump truck or two.

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Tessa Bonhomme

Tessa Bonhomme.jpgFans in the stands at the Montreal Stars game this weekend may be cheering for the other team... just a little. The Toronto Furies boast Olympic gold medal winners and world champions - as does Montreal.

But one Toronto player has another title.

Tessa Bonhomme won the Battle of the Blades this season on CBC. As a figure skater!

Tessa Bonhomme spoke to Sonali Karnick about this weekend's match, the challenges of women's hockey, and her New Year's Resolutions!

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