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November 2012 Archives

Satrangi: Seven stories of light

Satrangi.jpgBack in May, we spoke with Deepali Lindblom about her sold-out Bollywood-style show in Montreal. Poutine Masala was a trilingual comedy mash-up of Quebec and Indian cultures.

Now she's back with a show that brings together seven different countries and traditions, travelling to Quebec, Nepal, India, Bosnia,  Peru, Egypt and France.

This show of storytelling and dance is called Satrangi: Seven Stories of Light. It opens this week.

Deepali Lindblom joins Sonali Karnick in-studio.

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Loreena McKennitt on an Ancient Road

Loreena McKennitt 2.jpgIn a career that's spanned more than 25 years, Loreena McKennitt has sold more than 14 million albums of her "eclectic Celtic" music. She's a singer and songwriter, harpist, and pianist. And she's self-managed, self-produced, and the head of her own record label, Quinlan Road. All that while travelling the world.

Her next journey takes her to Quebec - Montreal, Quebec City, Sherbrooke, Trois Rivieres, Drummondville and Saguenay. The tour is called Once Upon an Ancient Road.

Loreena McKennitt joins Sonali Karnick in-studio. Listen to Parts 1 and 2:

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Tourism Quebec: Sunday

Micheline Lachance from Tourism Quebec is here with her picks for what to do across the province today:

Et tu ake - Maori Debout   (Musée de la civilisation, Québec)
Through September 8th 2013

History of Impressionism (Museum of Fine Arts, Montreal)
Through September 8th 2013

And, find out more about the Fourchette bleue rating for seafood sustainability and diversity in Quebec!                 

For further details on activities, making accomodation reservations or receiving brochures, click on or call Tourism Quebec toll-free at 1 877-Bonjour (1-877-266-5687).

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Red: the story of abstract painter Mark Rothko

Red poster.jpgThe latest production at the Segal Centre in Montreal is a play called Red.

It's a six-time Tony Award-winning drama, directed here by award-winning veteran of the Stratford Festival, Martha Henry.

Red tells the story of artist Mark Rothko, who was a pioneer of the abstract expressionist movement.

Rothko made a name for himself in the 1950s with his 'multiform' paintings - huge canvasses painted with rectangles of colour and light that seemed to float off the canvas. Then in 1958, he was offered one of the biggest commissions in the history of modern art - a set of murals for the Seagram building in New York.

That's where Red begins. Randy Hughson plays the artist, and Jesse Aaron Dwyre plays his young assistant. They joined Elizabeth Robertson in studio.


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Thomas Hellman sings Roland Giguère

Thomas Hellman.jpgMontreal singer-songwriter Thomas Hellman has won prestigious awards for his songwriting in both Quebec and France.

But his latest album is a tribute to a Quebec poet.

All the lyrics come from poems by Roland Giguere.

Thomas Hellman joins Elizabeth Robertson in-studio to tell her about this latest project, Thomas Hellman chante Roland Giguère.





(Photo courtesy of Thomas Hellman)

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Tibetan Cultural Fair

tibet cultural fair.jpgThis weekend in Montreal, the 24th annual Tibetan Cultural Fair  features a handicrafts bazaar, live music and dance performances, as well as traditional cuisine.  

Tenzing Musu has been a volunteer in the kitchen, making momos for many years at the annual event in Montreal.

She tells Elizabeth Robertson her story - and how to make momos.

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Retro aluminum Christmas trees in Dorval

Vintage Christmas tree.jpgRemember that scene in Charlie Brown's Christmas, when Linus and Charlie Brown go to a Christmas tree lot to find a tree for the pageant?

The lot has no real trees (except for one small one). They're all brightly coloured aluminum trees. Charlie Brown rejects them.

But back in the 1960s, aluminum trees of silver, gold, turquoise and pink were all the rage.

Now a local collector of those trees has lent his sparkly collection of aluminum Christmas trees and ornaments to the Dorval Museum of Local History and Heritage.  You can enjoy this retro holiday exhibition called "Christmas Sparkles!" as of tomorrow.

The museum curator Beverly Rankin describes the collection to Elizabeth Robertson.

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Tourism Quebec: Saturday

Micheline Lachance from Tourism Quebec begins her countdown to Christmas:

Christmas market in Old Port of Québec    
Through December 31rst

Santa arrives in Granby !  (Eastern Townships)
Today at 10am

Christmas market in Baie-St-Paul (Charlevoix)
Through December 2nd

For further details on activities, making accomodation reservations or receiving brochures, click on or call Tourism Quebec toll-free at 1 877-Bonjour (1-877-266-5687).

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Melanie Watt's "Scaredy Squirrel"

scaredy squirrel prepares for christmas.jpgThe annual book fest (or feast) known as the Salon du Livre is on in Montreal. Most of the books are in French, but at least one of the authors you can visit today is perfectly bilingual - and so are her books.

Mélanie Watt writes and illustrates the very popular children's book series about a character named Scaredy Squirrel. He's also become a TV series.

This holiday season, Mélanie Watt has a new book out called Scaredy Squirrel Prepares for Christmas. Mélanie spoke with Sonali Karnick about Scaredy, as well as about Mélanie's more confident creation, Chester the cat.

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Something Grand: The Camino

Roncevalles stone 2012.jpgA new documentary goes on a pilgrimmage to Santiago de Compostella along the camino in Spain.

Matthew Anderson produced the film. He's a part-time professor in theological studies at Concordia University, as well as at Loyola College for Diversity and Sustainability.

Last spring, he climbed over the Pyrenees with groups of pilgrims on the 800-km walk to Santiago and asked them 'why are you doing this?'

The result is called "Something Grand."

The documentary makes its debut on Monday at Concordia.

(left, Matthew Anderson at the Roncevalles stone; photo courtesy of Matthew Anderson)

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L'APPUI: hotline for caregivers across Quebec

Logo_Lappui_FR.pngThere's no real weekend if you're a constant caregiver for an elderly family member, and in Quebec, that means an estimated 300 000 people.

The organization L'APPUI recently launched a provincial hotline to help. The new professional telephone service offers support, references and a friendly ear. The provincial hotline is a toll-free number - in both English and French. They're gradually opening up regional hotlines across Quebec as well. Dr Michel Boivin is the head of L'APPUI, as well as a gastro-enterologist at the CHUM.  He spoke with Sonali Karnick about the hotline.

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Les Primitifs: survival school

MathieuHebert.JPGMost of us spend our weekends running errands, doing laundry, and seeing friends and family. But this morning, we're going to hear about a different sort of weekend.

We're taking you into the forest in St Gabriel de Valcartier, north of Quebec City. That's where a small group spent last weekend learning survival skills at a school called Les Primitifs.

The CBC's Kim Garritty spent the afternoon to see what it was all about, and she joins us in our Quebec City studio. (Just a warning: if you're squeamish about raw meat or just about to eat breakfast, you might want to put your spoon down!)

(Above, co-founder Mathieu Hébert; photo by Kim Garritty) 

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Tourism Quebec: Sunday

Micheline Lachance of Tourism Quebec has a variety of events and shows in the province for today.

Laval wine show  (Cosmodome)

Musik : from sound to emotion   (Centre des Sciences, Montréal)

Vodou   (Musée des Civilisation, Gatineau, Outaouais)

For further details on activities, making accommodation reservations or receiving brochures you may visit Tourim Quebec's web site :  or call toll-free at 1 877-Bonjour (1-877-266-5687).

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Mixed Curling championship in TMR

Curling stones.jpgThe Town of Mount Royal Curling club is hosting the Canadian Mixed Curling Championship.

This is the largest curling championship in Canada held in a club rather than an arena. And 14 teams from across the country will compete.

It also just happens to mark the 50th anniversary of the competition.

So in the spirit of mixed curling - we have a mixed pair in our studio this morning.

Mike Fournier is the skip of the Quebec team, and Eileen McKay-Saturnino is the lead of the Northwest Territories team.

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Nick Malgieri's Bread

Bread.jpgAward-winning pastry chef Nick Malgieri returns to the All in a Weekend studio this morning.

His latest book Bread includes a range of recipes, for everything from sourdough loaves, to pita bread to spinach and roquefort bread pudding.

Nick is the former executive pastry chef at the New York City's "destination" restaurant Windows on the World. He's the author of several books including Modern Baker, Perfect Cakes and Chocolate.
He now directs the baking program at the Insitute of Culinary Education in New York  - when he isn't writing cookbooks.

 Nick will be at the Westmount bookstore Appetite for Books later today.

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Canada Writes: take the (science) challenge!

canada-writes-logo.jpgWe may not all be science buffs, but science and technology are a part of daily life for all of us.  And that's the idea behind the latest challenge from CBC's Canada Writes.

The winner of the Close Encounters with Science Writing challenge will go home with a cool $1000 from the Canada Council for the Arts.

The editors of Canada Writes, Chris DiRaddo and Jennifer Warren, joined Sonali in studio with a couple of the entries they've received from Quebec so far.

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Tourism Quebec: Saturday

Micheline Lachance from Tourism Quebec has both indoor and outdoor activities to suggest for this weekend:

1) Santa Claus parade (Montreal, on Ste-Catherine Street)

  Today, beginning at 11:00am

2)  Zoom Photo Festival/Saguenay (Chicoutimi, Saguenay Lac-St-Jean)
    Through November 25th

3) Cottage and summer home show (Centre des foires, Québec)
   Through Sunday

For further details on activities, making accomodation reservations or receiving brochures, go to, or call toll free at 1 877-Bonjour (1-877-266-5687).

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Diwali sweets: how to make "laddu"

Laddoos-finished.JPGHindus all over the world will light up their homes for Diwali or Deepawali on Tuesday. The festival of lights is the most important day of the year on the Hindu calendar.  Family and friends celebrate together with prayer and songs, and special celebrations in mandirs, or temples, take place in the five holy days leading up to it. The idea is to cast out the darkness and bring in the light. But of course, there is a not-so-light side to Diwali - sweets!

Sonali Karnick went to see a very good friend of the family, Rekha Kulkarni, for a lesson in making one of the most commonly consumed treats during this holiday. When Sonali first tried to make laddu, it was not a raging success. This time, with help, they were fudgy and delicious!

Here's the recipe for Besan Laddu:

4 cups besan (chick pea flour)
1 1/2 cups ghee, melted (clarified butter)
Seeds scraped from 7-8 cardamom pods, crushed finely with a mortar and pestle (a spice grinder or rolling pin also works to crush the seeds)
1/4 tsp nutmeg (more if you like it)
2 3/4- 3 cups icing sugar
40 toasted almonds
40 raisins

laddos-first step.JPG1) In a large pot over medium heat, mix together the chick pea flour and 1/2cup clarified butter (total stirring time will be about half an hour).

2) Stir together for about 5 minutes, until the butter is fully absorbed into chick pea flour.

3) Add another 1/2 cup of clarified butter and keep stirring. The colour of the flour will darken slightly.                                       

laddos-cooked.JPG4) When the additional butter is absorbed into the flour, add the rest of it.

5) Stir constantly until the mixture smells like cooked chick peas and the colour changes to orange. (Reduce the heat if you are seeing brown spots in the flour as it may be too hot and burn the mixture.)

6) Remove the pot from the heat and mix in the spices.

laddu sugar.JPG7) Bring the mixture to room temperature and incorporate the sugar, tasting for sweetness.

laddu forming.JPG8) Take about 2 tbsp of the mixture and press an almond in the centre. Form the dough around the almond to make a ball and press a raisin on top for decoration.

9) Store at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 3 weeks.

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Leonard Cohen biography: "I'm Your Man"

Leonard Cohen book.jpgSylvie Simmons is a British rock journalist who's also done biographies of other iconic figures like Neil Young and Serge Gainsbourg.  Now she's taken on another cultural icon, Leonard Cohen.  I'm Your Man: The Life of Leonard Cohen is a thorough telling of his life and work and what still drives him to perform and create.

Many fans know the basics of Cohen's life:

 - his life in Montreal where he starts out as a poet in the 1950s.
- his escapade on a Greek island with Marianne.
- the mid-90s, when in spite of a best-selling album and a fiancé who's a Hollywood actress, he retreats to a Buddhist monastery near Los Angeles.
- the early 2000s, when he discovers his manager has stolen almost all of his money, he re-starts his career with albums and a sold-out world tour in his 70s

Those are just the things that many of us know.

Biographer Sylvie Simmons is here to tell us about some of the things we didn't know - such as Cohen's interest in hypnosis, Scientology and the real title of the song "So Long Marianne".

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McGill University during WWII

waterston_jitterbug_lg.jpgElizabeth Hillman Waterston started her first week at McGill University in 1939. It was also the first week of World War Two. 

On campus, they were enjoying torchlight football parades and dances at the Ritz Carleton, while the war was gathering momentum in Europe. But soon Elizabeth's male friends, colleagues and, even, instructors enlisted in the war, and she and other female students were working for the Red Cross.

Elizabeth Waterston has now written a book about that defining period in her life. It's called Blitzkrieg and Jitterbugs: College Life in Wartime 1939-1942.  Sonali Karnick spoke with her on  Remembrance Day.

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Tourism Quebec: Sunday

Micheline Lachance of Tourism Quebec has more suggestions for indoor activities, this time a tour of museum exhibits:

1. Mimmo Jodice - Villes sublimes    (McCord Museum, Montreal)

2. Art et nature au Moyen âge    (Museum of Fine Arts, Québec)

3. Three Times Ten. The collection,  (Sherbrooke, Eastern Townships)

For further details on activities, making accommodation reservations or receiving brochures, you can visit or call Tourism Quebec, toll free, at 1 877-Bonjour (1-877-266-5687)

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Nettie Covey Sharpe's folk art collection

Coq de croix de chemin, Musee des Beaux Arts Sherbrooke.jpgA travelling exhibition of Quebec Folk Art is now on at the Musee des beaux-arts in Sherbrooke.

It's sort of a homecoming.

Most of the collection was gathered over many years by an antiques 'picker' from the Townships. Her name was Nettie Covey Sharpe - and she knew the value of Quebec's folk heritage long before many others did.

Before she died in 2002, she had donated almost a thousand pieces of folk art to the Canadian Museum of Civilization - and had thousands of others at her home.  Jean-François Blanchette is the curator of Historic Furniture and Decorative Arts at the Canadian Museum of Civilization in Gatineau.  He's also a specialist on the subject of Nettie Covey Sharpe. He joined Sonali Karnick on line to talk about her and the exhibit.

 (Photo, above, Rooster from wayside cross; courtesy of Musée des beaux-arts de Sherbrooke)

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Cookbook Club: Kevin and Jenny make brunch

Sunday Brunch cookbook.jpgThey've stirred, baked, scrambled and waffled. And now our first Cookbook Club members join Sonali Karnick to review the cookbook Sunday Brunch by Betty Rosbottom.

Kevin Clark and Jenny Pearson-Millar had a couple of weeks to test it out.

Kevin is originally from the U-S and lives in Montreal.
He regularly hosts brunches with his friends. Jenny runs Plumes et Glisse bed and breakfast in Lac Supérieur in the Laurentians and tried out the recipes on her guests. 

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Girls Night Out for mothers and daughters

There are many different ways to have a night out with the girls. But the Jewish Public Library in Montreal gives it their own spin with their annual Girls Night Out event.

It's for mothers and daughters. And it involves, of course, books.

book-fallen2.jpgNext Sunday night, mothers and daughters will be heading out to see the author of the popular young-adult fantasy series Fallen.  Characters include fallen angels  - and even an evil librarian!

To tell us more about the evening, we invited in another sort of librarian, Penny Fransblow. She's head of the children's section of the Jewish Public Library - and one of the people who started Girls Night Out. Joy Melnick, one of this year's co-chairs for Girls Night Out, joined her in-studio with Sonali Karnick.

For reservations for next Sunday, you can call:

514-345-2627 ext 3159

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Betty Rosbottom's Sunday Brunch

Betty Rosbottom- Perry phot.jpgComing up later on our first Cookbook Club, Kevin and Jenny have been trying out our first cookbook Sunday Brunch: Simple, Delicious recipes for Leisurely Mornings.

We'll hear about their experiments in the kitchen.  But first, we heard from the author of the cookbook, Betty Rosbottom. 

Betty Rosbottom has actually written a series of Sunday cookbooks including Sunday Soup and Sunday Roasts.

The Brunch recipes go far beyond eggs and pancakes - from potato-arugula omelettes to twice-ginger gingerbread muffins.

Betty Rosbottom spoke with Sonali from her home in Massachussetts.

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Tourism Quebec: Saturday

If you're not ready to embrace winter just yet, Micheline Lachance of Tourism Quebec has some indoor activities around the province:

1) La Grande Dégustation de Montréal (Palais des Congrès, Montreal)
   On today

2) Salon des Arts des Bois-Francs  (Victoriaville, Centre-du-Québec)
    Through Sunday

3) Salon national du quad et des véhicules hors route (Forzani Centre, Laval)  
    Through Sunday

For further details on activities, making accomodation reservations or receiving brochures, you can click on or call toll-free 1-877-Bonjour (1-877-266-5687).


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Good People at Centaur

Good People.jpgCentaur Theatre's latest production is set in Boston's tough working class neighborhood known as "Southie", and the accents are as strong as the attitude in the play Good People.

A single mother is fired from her job as a cashier, and she turns to her former boyfriend for help but he's managed to make a better life for himself and now lives in the wealthy Chestnut Hill. Their beliefs and worlds collide in a story that looks at how the class system can sometimes play out in the U.S.

Sonali Karnick spoke with the director of Good People, Roy Surette.
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Elisapie Isaac: Travelling Love

Elisapie Isaac.jpgElisapie Isaac just launched her second solo album called Travelling Love. The album was officially launched this week in Montreal. It's her second solo CD : she also produced a Juno-award-winning album as part of the duo Taima.

Elisapie Isaac sings and writes songs in two of her three languages on this album -- English and Inuktitut. She tells Sonali Karnick about her love of pop music and Leonard Cohen!

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Christine Pountney's "Sweet Jesus"

Sweet Jesus.jpgIt's a week before the American election in a new novel  by Christine Pountney. A strange coincidence!

In the book, three siblings, facing big changes in their lives, go on a road trip in that pre-election period, from Toronto to Witchita, Kansas, and they're headed for the Kingdom of Salvation Prophetic Ministry.

Along the way, the novel Sweet Jesus explores some very current themes: the definitions of family, religion and faith.

Christine Pountney grew up in Montreal and Vancouver.  She spoke with Sonali Karnick about the new novel and the timing of its release.

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John Ralson Saul, part 2: PEN International

Last week, John Ralston Saul came in to our studio to speak with Sonali Karnick about his new novel Dark Diversions, his first in 15 years. One of the reasons why it's taken John Ralston Saul so long to complete it is his work as president of PEN International - and he's just signed on for a second term.

This is part two of Sonali Karnick's conversation with him.

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Tourism Quebec: Sunday Update

Seasonal and not-so-seasonal activities in Quebec care of Micheline Lachance of Yourism Quebec:

Noël Chez Nous à Rivière-du-loup (Bas St-Laurent)
On today

Montreal Arab World festival
Through November 10th

Rencontre des arts (Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu)
On today

For further details on activities, making accomodation reservations or receiving brochures, go to or call toll-free 1 877-Bonjour (1-877-266-5687).

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Caracol: tribute to Nick Drake

Nick_drake_Time_of_No_Reply.jpgDuring his lifetime, British singer and songwriter Nick Drake had some success with his poetic folk-rock. He recorded his first album at just 20 years old.

But the albums didn't live up to expectations or hopes. And he suffered increasingly from mental illness. At just 26, he died of a drug overdose.

But his story doesn't end there.His music was rediscovered slowly over the decades. Compilations were reissued, biographies and articles were written, and documentaries were made. Then, in 2000, a Volkswagen ad doubled his total sales of the song Pink Moon in just 3 weeks.

Now there's another special tribute show - this time crossing Canada. In Quebec, local musicians will join in for shows in Sherbrooke, Quebec City and Montreal (dates, times and places below).

Caracol.jpgCarole Facal, whose stage name is Caracol, is one of the performers and she told Sonali Karnick why she loves Nick Drake's music (so much so that she"s doing the concert even at the end of her pregnancy!).


Thurs, November 8th - MONTREAL at the Ukrainian National Federation
Special Guests: Caracol, Marie-Jo Thério, Louis-Jean Cormier (Karkwa), Kim Bingham
Tickets: Cheap Thrills, Phonopolis, Atom Heart Musique, or,

Sat, November 10th - SHERBROOKE at Centennial Theatre, Bishop's University
Special Guests: Marie-Jo Thério, Charles-Antoine Gosselin (Harvest Breed)
Tickets: Musique City or online at,

Sun November 11th - QUEBEC CITY at Chalmers-Wesley United Church
Special Guests: Louis-Jean Cormier (Karkwa), Marie-Jo Thério


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Taste Montreal at a more affordable price

From now until next Sunday, November 11th, almost 100 restaurants across Montreal are offering special table d'hôte menus at unusually low prices.

Restaurants from Toqué to Newtown to La Khaima to Dévi are offering menus at set prices, for $19, $29 or $39.

It's an event called Taste Montreal.

New York City, San Francisco, Toronto and Vancouver have already hosted their own Restaurant Weeks, but this is the inaugural edition in Montreal.

Tourism Montreal has organized the event, and Pierre Bellerose, the vice president of public relations for Tourism Montreal, explains how it works.


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Goalie Jamie McLennan's hockey stories

Best Seat in the House.jpgSometimes what happens on the ice doesn't stay on the ice. It's not the whole story either.

Former NHL goaltender Jaime McLennan's new book The Best Seat in the House talks about the odd situations and antics he got into and out of, including his disastrous meeting with Kiss band member Gene Simmons.

Jaime McLennan tells a few tales out of school, in-studio with Sonali Karnick.

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Tourism Quebec: Saturday

Micheline Lachance from Tourism Quebec is here to look at tours and mini-adventures for the family this weekend:

1) Canopy tours at  Arbraska Rawdon (Rawdon Lanaudière)
    Through November 30th

2) Treetop adventures, ziplines at Arbre Sutton    (Eastern Townships)
    On today (last weekend)

3) Aventure Laflèche et Parcs Aériens (Val des Monts, Outaouais)
   Through November 11th

For further details on activities, making accomodation reservations or receiving brochures, go to or call toll-free 1 877-Bonjour (1-877-266-5687).

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