A personal view of Knowlton, Quebec, the Eastern Townships most beautiful village.

Ecosphere Thanks DestinationKnowlton.com
Read the full story here.

DestinationKnowlton.com isn't afraid to be the number one ass!The Destination Knowlton website tries, in it's own little way, to bring opinion, news, upcoming arts and cultural events as well as photographs of Lac Brome and Knowlton without being a traditional newspaper that relies on pulp and paper mills for production. This website has a smaller carbon footprint than say "The Sherbrooke Record" "La Voix de L'est" or "The Brome County Snooze" which all use paper and ink to print the news...that means cutting forests and mixing up solvents...ouch...that wouldn't please David Suzuki!!

Well this is 2008 and that paper and ink is old school stuff soon to go the way of the Dodo! Newspapers are a dying breed as more and more people turn to the Internet for news and opinions...yep...DK.com is on the cutting edge which isn't too bad considering we're based in teensey-weensey Knowlton Quebec! Pretty soon more and more advertisiers will realize that paying a few hundred dollars for a small advertisement in a local paper isn't as good a return on investment as placing advertising on a popular local website...like this one! Advertising on a local website can cost several times less than traditional newspapers and magazines which are scrambling to find advertisiers in their soon-to-be-extinct media!

Recently we were happy to be recognized by Eric Ferland, co-president of the Project Ecosphere, for being a responsible and environmentally friendly form of local news...well...we think that's what the letter said...after all it was all written in French so we may have missed some bits but at least it didn't say "Sans Prejudice" or "Mise en Demure" at the top of the letter so it can't be that bad!

Here is the letter; finally some "fan mail"?

Bonjour à vous,

Merci pour l'article que vous avez produit en septembre dernier concernant la foire environnementale de Brome.

Is that a bird or a plane? The Ecosphere plane buzzing Lac Brome was a bit of a flop to some.J'aimerai apporter quelques renseignements concernant cet article.

Premièrement, je suis le premier à dire que le vol de la bannière était une erreur et je peux vous assurer que c'était la dernière fois que vous aller voir une bannière dans le ciel pour promouvoir la foire.

Deuxièmement, tous les papiers utilisés afin de promouvoir l'événement est approuvé FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) avec un fort pourcentage de papier recyclé et imprimé avec des encres végétales. Cette année, nous utiliserons un papier 100 % recyclé. Papier glacé n'égale pas nécessairement papier non recyclé.

Nous réaliserons un événement similaire à Ottawa du 2 au 4 août et l'événement sera carbone neutre et nous travaillons actuellement afin que l'événement de Brome soit carbone neutre d'ici peu.

Pour ce qui est du développement éolien, l'Allemagne et plusieurs autres pays Européen, ont déjà surpassé les objectifs de Kyoto grâce au développement éolien. Pour l'Allemagne, on parle de plus de 20 %, ce qui est magnifique.

Je suis d'accord avec Monsieur Muir concernant le développement éolien dans notre région. Steven Guilbault, anciennement de Greenpeace est le premier à dire que ce genre de développement devrait ce faire proche des grandes centrales hydroélectriques du Québec. Louis-Gilles Francoeur, journaliste du Devoir, rapportait qu'une grosse entreprise d'éolienne avait rencontré le président d'Hydro-Québec, afin de faire un développement éolien proche de la rivière Rupert. Cette rivière subit de grandes modifications afin d'alimenter un autre barrage à plusieurs km de sa localisation. Hydro est en train de modifier ce cour d'eau important pour des projets de développement. Cette magnifique rivière subira de nombreuses modifications.

Project Ecosphere Banner

Le projet d'éolienne proposé était des plus ambitieux. Le président de cette firme Allemande, proposait de construire des éoliennes qui produiraient autant d'électricité que les eaux pouvaient produire et cela à un coût moindre que l'hydroélectricité. De plus, le président proposait d'installer le bureau chef de cette entreprise pour l'Amérique du nord au Québec. Imaginez les avancées technologiques que le Québec aurait pu obtenir sur ce genre d'équipement. Des éoliennes capables d'être immobilisées à moins 50 degré Celcius pendant plusieurs heures et redémarrer avec un petit souffle du vent. C'est le genres de projets que nous devons développer, pas dans nos terres agricoles ou les seules bénéficiaires sont quelques résidents et que les voisins n'auront rien pour les dédommager du bruit et du paysage modifier.

Pour de plus amples informations, je vous invite à me téléphoner au numéro ci-dessous.

Encore merci pour l'article et à bientôt,

Éric Ferland
Coprésident
Projet Écosphère
8, chemin du Moulin à Scie
Frelighsburg, Québec J0J 1C0
e.ferland@projetecosphere.org

Here is some background from our previous coverage of the Ecosphere held every year at the Brome Fair Grounds:
Going Green Has Two Sides | 2007 Ecosphere comes to Lac Brome

Renaissance Lac Brome Offers Lake Bushes
Read the full story here.

The shoreline of Brome Lake will be taking on a healthier appearance over the next few years as RLB begins their plan of action to help save the lake!After holding a public consultation meeting, the Town of Brome Lake will soon adopt a new bylaw requiring residents to maintain lake shorelines and river banks in a natural condition. In practice this means that grass cutting will be forbidden within 10 meters of lakes and water courses.

Many people wonder if the Town will insist that industrial residents like Brome Lake Ducks or Les Emballages Knowlton will be forced to plant barrier zones and invest in green shorelines? Why not plant bushes? What abou the condo developments and golf courses that have streams and brroks running through them? It seems like only yesterday that Paul Martin, ex Prime-Minister of Canada, ignored environmental rules and uprooted trees within putting distance of a stream to make way for a new fairway for his private Golf Course within Brome Lake. Will such residents be having inspections to ensure they have bushes growing on the shorelines? Many residents think not.

Concerns have also been expressed at the dump site behind the fire hall which is right on the waterway, the garages in Lac Brome which store rusting, fluid leaking vehicles and parts often within meters of brooks and streams...most of these cars are junked jallopies that even Archie and his gang would not dare to try and re-build so some folks wonder why in this era of global green do towns even allow this practice to continue!

New rules regarding permits for building have recently been announced by the Town but existing residents and businesses, who either have properties on the lakeside or properties that have streams passing through them, are not sure if they will all be treated equally. As was seen in recent tax hikes the town has raised the taxes of private property owners but have generousely dropped taxes for industrial clients, many of whom, some residents say, are creating more pollution than anyone and should thus experience a raising of taxes instead of the opposite!

As for those eligible (your property must be affected by the bylaw) RLB is offering up to 200 bushes per property owner (1 bush for each square meter to be restored is recommended). The distribution, in return for a nominal contribution, will take place on May 3 and May 17 in the parking lot of the Knowlton IGA (the shiney new IGA location, not the ramshackle decrepitated old IGA building still sitting vacant like a nine-number bingo card) between the hours of 8 am and 12 noon.

To reserve your bushes nowor for more information contact Renaissance Lac Brome at info@renaissancelbl.com or visit the Renaissance Lac Brome website.

Together we can do it! In many other communities residents have joined together to help save lakes, rivers and ponds. Now it's our turn!During recent meetings Renaissance Lac Brome, the grassroots group determined to assist in positive remediation of the lake, laid the ground work for the upcoming season.

During 2008, RLB will continue the programs it began in 2007, emphasizing concrete
measures for the restoration and preservation of the environment of the lake and of the streams throughout the watershed. Various approaches will be tried to improve coordination among the municipalities and other bodies involved in the watershed (Ministry of the Environment, MRCs, Cogeby, Ministry of Agriculture, UPA, woodlands operators, etc.), with a view to achieving true watershed-based management.

Monitoring of the physical and chemical condition of the lake and its tributaries will be continued and improved. In addition to our operational activities, the following projects are planned for 2008:

1. Renaturalization of the shoreline of the lake (shrub-planting program)
2. Reforestation of Brome Lake tributaries – Phase 1
3. Lake monitoring (physical and chemical characteristics)
4. Monitoring of lake water clarity (Secchi disc readings)
5. Measuring the frequency and extent of blue-green algae blooms
6. Monitoring water quality in the tributaries (with Université de Sherbrooke)
7. Public information campaigns (3) and documentation
8. Maintenance and development of the website
9. Membership
10. Network of sector representatives throughout the watershed
11. Fundraising
12. Management of citizens’ complaints
13. Adoption of rules relating to motor boats
14. Participation in Town of Brome Lake’s Action Plan against blue-green algae
15. Public meetings

Lawns right to the water will be replaced with lush shorelines!Three additional projects are planned if financial and human resources permit:

16. Working with commercial and industrial operations in the watershed
17. Analysis of secondary watersheds within the Brome Lake watershed (2)
18. Working to improve defective septic systems

Renaissance Lac Brome is a progressive and active group determined to work with the powers that be to help save Brome Lake. Any residents or concerned citizens interested in helping restore one of the Eastern Townships wonderful lakes is invited to visit the website of the group: http://www.renaissancelbl.com/

Lost Cat Found in Knowlton
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Did you lose a little pussy-cat? We are looking for the owners of a young healthy long hair female or male tabby cat. We’ve been seeing this cat around our yard for some weeks now and it looks like it’s staying underneath our porch. It doesn’t have a collar and still has claws. It is very playful and affectionate.

It needs a bath and grooming. If unclaimed it will most probably end up at the SPCA or some shelter because we cannot keep an outdoor cat. If this is your cat or you know who lost it please send an email to us through this website!

UPDATE
Well it turns out this isn't a lost cat after all! This turns out to be a lovely Maine Coon purebred cat who was owned by a dear lady on Oak street who had to give up the cat when she moved into the Manoir Knowlton, a home for the elderly in Knowlton. The woman had given the lovely cat to a neighbour and this wiley cat decided that Spring was a good time to roam the neighborhood and when we saw him taking up residence under our porch we assumed he was lost!









We call him Leo! He loves to climb trees and hunt and play with his new friend Sassy! Here is a video of them together; pussy-cat friends for the Summer of 2008.

The Maine Coon is one of the largest breeds of domestic cat, known for its high intelligence and playfulness as well as its distinctive physical appearance. The breed is one of the oldest natural breeds in North America and originated from New England, specifically native to the state of Maine, (in fact, the Maine Coon is the official Maine State Cat), making it America's first indigenous show cat. The Maine Coon cat is known as "the gentle giant."

See some more great pictures of the Maine Coon Cat Here http://www.blazerscats.com/maine_coons.html

Remember...to support your local Animal Shelter and SPCA.

SQ Ambushes Peeve Lac Brome Drivers
Read the full story here.

Traffic in Brome Lake careens dangerously eyt there is not a cop to be found...The trucks roar through Brome Lake at excessive speeds. The tailgaters hang on our bumpers. The school zone and residential speed-limits are blatantly ignored. Crosswalks with elderly residents using walkers trying to cross are being ignored. School buses with flashing lights unloading children are being ignored. Vehicles doing the speed limit on Lakeside or Knowlton Road or Victoria Street are being passed and sometimes cars are passing against a solid yellow line attempting to pass two vehicles at once on a corner or risking the lives of pedestrians who have no sidewalk to walk upon.

Meanwhile the SQ sits idly...charging too much and preferring to ambush drivers instead of really helping with public security!

While these obvious highway code violations occur many residents are scratching their heads asking “Where are the SQ who we are paying to patrol our streets?”

Roads in Brome Lake are pocked with potholes and are winding twisting single lane danger zones yet the traffic on these hazardous roads seems to be faster and faster every day yet the police in charge of our streets seem to prefer to hang out in the shadows and ambush drivers who are using the nicest roads in the region!

Why would the police ignore flagrant violations in our towns and just sit on their bums waiting to catch someone going slightly over the speed limit?

The answer is being discovered by more and more residents...the SQ officers assigned to traffic ticket duty on the roads of Brome Lake seem to feel it would be helpful to ambush drivers by hiding along the best roads outside of Lac Brome instead of dealing with the dangerous driving in Town!

The cops have been camped out far outside of the reach of any dangerous traffic violations and are waiting to pounce on drivers who take the few well paved roads in Brome Lake. The best roads are between Bromont and Knowlton, a lovely paved stretch of highway that features flat straight roads with nothing but vast fields to both side. This is the road that any driver could let go of the steering wheel and close their eyes for a nap and still wake up after 5 minutes and be on the smooth and arrow straight road! The speed limit on the road is 80 kmh.

Meanwhile...the speed limits on other roads that are riddled with potholes, covered in corners, dangerous due to lack of shoulders, and laden with over-filled dump trucks, is 90kmh and even on these roads, if you dare drive the speed limit, you will have a train of tailgaters riding your bumper!

Many residents are feeling like mascots in a game of taxpayer stupidity as they are getting tickets from the SQ who literally are not helping the public security of Lake Brome or Knowlton!In the village of Knowlton cars ignore the crosswalks, trucks speed through the 50 kmh zone at least at 80kmh and there is not a police car to be seen! Why would the SQ feel it helps the public safety to hide in the bushes and ticket drivers? It’s called laziness...it’s called bureaucracy...and it’s called ripping us off!

According to many, the policing of Brome Lake is at an all-time low as far as quality of service goes yet the cost of having the SQ patrol our region is the highest per capita in Quebec! Are we suckers?

Maybe not complete suckers but the poor police service on our roads is leaving many residents feeling that an accident is waiting to happen! With the blatant traffic violations going on even within the tiny village of Knowlton you’d think that our tax dollars were going towards a police service, the Surete du Quebec, or SQ, that could Serve and Prtotect.

Even myself, a taxpaying, land-owning person in Brome Lake has recently been exposed to the useless Public Service the SQ is providing. Recently I had to take a rare trip to Montreal from Knowlton and like many motorists who prefer to avoid the winding stretch of Lakeside Road full of trucks and aggressive residents speeding on the tight rounding road, I took Brome Road towards Bromont which is the only nicely paved stretch of Road in all of Brome Lake! This road is so straight that a driver can let go of the steering wheel and take a nap and their car will drive for 10 minutes because the road is so wide and straight and surrounded by nothing but wide soft fields of wheat! For some reason the “engineers” of the Quebec Highway Department figured that such a straight wide and clear highway should have one of the lowest speed limits in the Eastern Townships!

Yep...things aren't looking good for the average driver...but the trucks will continue to roar through town yapping unempeded on their cellphones!So of course I am driving on a bright sunny day listening to 99.9 The Buzz on the radio of the Salsa Vibe and while I’m trying to do the speed limit....it just doesn’t make sense on this road! When anyone drives the speed limit on this road the cows in the fields will literally laugh and point at the car! I’ve been doing 100kmh on this road and had towtrucks literally flash their lights at me wanting me to go faster or move over as if it was Burt Reynolds driving! I could never understand why I was allowed to go faster up Tibbits Hill which is a pothole ridden, narrow road or why when I entered Brome Lake on Highway 104 at over the speed-limit I had cars and trucks passing me yet when I cruised alone on this road towards Bromont I was pulled over for speeding!

I wish I had been pulled over by a local police or a first responder...at least if we had local police we would likely know the officer who pulled us over and maybe a warning would have been in order. As it was I was ticketed by a SQ officer who probably didn’t live in Brome Lake and was likely assigned to traffic duty because of some sort of indiscretion due to the publication a YouTube video of some bum slapping incident at the Police Station! This guy, besides being out of shape and smelling like salt and vinegar Humpty Dumpty chips, had no sense of cool.

He said to me:” Do you know why I pulled you over”
I said to him:”I was probably going over the speed limit”

Directors note: The speed limit is 80kmh which is so slow that the cud-chewing cows in the field will literally laugh if you do that speed. The road is straighter and wider than any other road in Brome Lake and for some reason has the slowest speed limits!! This is the kind of road that even an airline pilot from Hewa Bora flight school would dream about to land a 737!

He said to me:”I know the road is good, and it’s a nice day, but do you know how fast you were going?”
I Said to him:”No....it seemed slow on such a good road on such a nice day....especially with no traffic either way! Was I going too slow?”

Directors note: There was no traffic...only cows...a speeder could have rolled their car into the ditch without harming even a fencepost!

He said to me:”Can I see your license and registration”
I said to him, thinking that he may be in a playful mood due to the sunny day and lack of traffic: ”It depends on the health of your eyesight...I find the Arial font printing on the Government issued Identification Cards is too small for most elderly people to read especially if they suffer from any sort of eye malfunction due to poor eating habits. Looking at you, sir, I’d say that perhaps you may not be able to see any sort of ID card I offered you without mechanical help of a magnifying apparatus....however your analysis of the conditions of the road today seem to display an odd appreciation that this ticket you plan to give me is a complete load of Boo-Hockey!”

Directors note: Were you expecting to get out of a ticket with such smart-ass talk? But your use of the word “boo-hockey” is good considering it is the Stanley Cup Playoffs and if the officer is a fan of the Canadiens he may let you off....good thinking!

So after this encounter I resign myself that this knuckle-dragger will be giving me a traffic ticket to meet his daily quote and can wag his tail all the way back to the station and show the boss how proud he is to have ambushed some drivers on the best roads of the territory while meanwhile residents have their life and limb being risked due to uncontrolled driving in the town! Good for you SQ dronesl!!

Maybe if I had looked like this I would not have got a ticket? WHOA! That would be a sexist remark from anyone...but still! Habs rule!Actually...the worst infraction was the fact that I was wearing a Montreal Canadiens Shirt! Man...if the SQ are so lame that they don’t give a speeder a break even when they are wearing a Habs shirt then we are really in trouble!

This SQ officer, code named “Daniel”, walked back to his SUV vehicle with my papers to write up my ticket. He seemed to be unsure of which end of the pencil was the right one to make a scribble because he literally took 20 minutes to write up the ticket! I have cerebrally challenged family members so I am not going to make light of any affirmative action policy that allows the hiring of police officers even when they cannot print via pen to paper, more than 6 words per minute...but this was ridiculous! Not only did this SQ officer sit in his SUV for 20 minutes writing me up a ticket but the worst thing is he left his vehicle running the whole time!

Dude! If you pull over a driver and then proceed to try and figure out your pencil then why not shut off you motor....have you heard about the planet Earth and the collapse of our environment or has the latest episode of Tete a Clac done something to your membrane?

Man...I was driving 100kmh which is the most efficient speed to reduce emissions and consumption. I was pulled over for doing that speed yet on Highway 10 when the speed limit in construction zones is 70kmh I would be killed in a drive-by if I slipped below 90...are the SQ there? NOT! So by asking me to reduce my efficiency and then while idling his engine the whole time while figuring out the mechanics of the lead pencil the SQ and Quebec Government has increased the carbon footprint of our region by a huge percentage!

Many residents are asking why this money sucking, environmental disregarding, useless police force is allowed to drain money from Lac Brome Taxpayers like a vampire!

It seems the motto of the SQ should be “To Self-Serve and Protect our Bosses” because many residents are not feeling that the abolition of the local police force in favor of the SQ to patrol our streets has been worth it.

More Lac Brome Residents Fed Up With Poor Police Service

At least if we had a local police force they would be more like us! Imagine the local police grabbing a double double at Tim Hortons and waving hello instead of ambushing drivers in Brome Lake!The Mayor’s of many Eastern Townships towns and municipalities aren’t the only ones who are fed up with the Surete du Quebec; residents are now voicing their complete dis-satisfaction with the lack-lustre service the SQ is providing to Brome Lake.

Of course, the cost of the SQ to “police” our little patch of heaven is going up faster than the price of unleaded gasoline with Brome Lake paying some of the highest price per-capita for the patrolling and service from the Quebec Police. While other municipalities have seen their policing costs go up only marginally over recent years, it seems that Brome Lake residents are being viewed as a cash-grab by the Government-run Police force who must feel that we are ready to just open our wallets and toss up whatever tax dollars they ask!

The cost of “service” from the SQ has jumped over 11% since last year forcing Brome Lake to hike taxes to try and pay the extra quarter-million dollars per year to the SQ. An 11% jump in cost is seen by many residents and local officials as nothing less than robbery! But when the cops are the ones doing the crime how can any of us do anything but try not to complain too much lest we have a boot-strapped attack by taser-wielding Police Officers sent in by the Minister of Public Security to show us that an 11% increase is a reasonable and fair augmentation!

The problem of poor public protection by the Surete du Quebec in Brome seems to be reaching a head as residents are getting “ambushed” by traffic ticketing police officers who are leaving a sour taste in the mouths of many residents who are tired of being given borderline traffic tickets in remote ares of Brome Lake while the safety of pedestrians, drivers and citizens within the town limits is being ignored.

I guess they can basically do what they want since they are, after all, the police! What are we supposed to do about crappy service that costs more than any other region in Quebec? We could maybe write to someone in Quebec City or complain to our MLA or even get on board with Mayor Wisdom who has been fed-up and battling the Minister of Public Security, Jacques Dupuis, over the pathetic police presence in Lac Brome and the continuously rising cost of such poor service.

Of course, trying to reason with Jacques Dupuis or whatever puppet is in office representing the Charest Liberal Quebec Government is a no-win fight. It would be like trying to argue with Lotto-Quebec that the suicides at the Montreal Casino are maybe a sign that gambling shouldn`t be a government sanctioned activity! Nope...the Government likes the income and since they write the rules they can decide how the game is played. If Brome Lake is being held hostage by the Police and the Minister of Security then we are literally screwed...who do the citizens, or the Mayor of Brome Lake complain to? They charge more and give worse service! That is sounding like a Monopoly or even a Government Service!! And if we’re fed up to the brim what are we supposed to do call the Police?

I wasn’t in Lac Brome in the good old days when they had their own Police Force but apparently Knowlton and Brome Lake used to have their own force and as recently as 2002 the annual budget for policing Lac Brome was only $770,000 dollars and now, only 6 years later residents are looking at paying over $1.9 million dollars. Wow! No wonder the Government wanted to take charge of policing...if they can rake taxpayers of Lac Brome over the coals with such exorbatent rate-increases every year then the Quebec Government must have been drooling in their soup thinking how they found a holy cash cow! The poor taxpayers of Brome Lake are being taken for more money than the Casino at Mount Tremblant could bring in 6 months and the Town of Brome Lake has no choice but to raising property taxes to pay for the SQ service!

Bring back the good old days where we had our own police force in Brome Lake!Residents of Lac Brome have been fuming recently as local property taxes have gone up more than the Canadian Inflation Rate and certainly more than wages! Of course taxes have only gone up for the regular folks of Knowlton, the Industrial Tax Rate in Lac Brome has actually been reduced. Some residents say this doesn’t make a bit of sense since the Industrial taxpayers of Brome lake like Les Emballages Knowlton and Brome Lake Ducks create the most heavy truck trafffic aand residual pollution that is causing Brome Lake to turn into a toxic dump. Whoa! That may be a little left-wing as far as pointing fingers goes, after all the Industrial residents of Lac Brome provide many jobs in a time of tough economics here in Eastern Canada...let’s face it...selling duck breasts to Japan or bottling Miss Clairol for the US headsets is not as lucrative as tunnelling into the tar sands of Alberta and we are losing taxpaying residents faster than you can say “Roll up the Rim to Win!”.

So the SQ, by overcharging for a poor service, is causing more and more residents a feeling of chagrin and concern. Some feel that this is another example of the provincial Government thinking only of their own “Union” of employees instead of actually caring for the population that builds the province. Some folks are saying that it would be nice to see Brome Lake Government stand up for the residents and revert to a local police force where the money being spent was actually going to the public safety and security instead of what is happening now! If the SQ prefer to hide in the bushes and leap out at residents to meet their quota of highway traffic tickets then they are doing less than nothing to protect the residents of Brome Lake...in fact they are creating more of a hazard and perhaps leaving real delinquants and violators to run free!

Looking at it from a SQ officers point of view it is likely more enjoyable to sit on a quiet road in Brome Lake watching the latest episode of Deal or No Deal on their portable laptop but the occasional motorist they pull over on the empty highway for excessive speed will hardly make the Taxpayers who pay their salary any safer. While cars and trucks are speeding through school zones and passing over double lines at triple the speed limit on Lakeside and Knowlton Road the cops, who are costing us an arm and a leg, prefer to just sit on their cushions waiting to ambush drivers on the only nice road in Lac Brome!




On April 19, Arts Sutton will launch the first of two annual exhibitions of works by its artist members, who will also be attending the opening. The show displays recent work by about 20 artists on the theme Sutton Going Green, providing an opportunity to view many different approaches to contemporary visual art.

Arts Sutton is very pleased to offer this exceptional member showcase. “This exhibition takes up the theme the Town of Sutton chose for the National Home Show held in Montreal this past March,” said Yves L.-Ph. Cousineau, president of the Gallery. In effect, the Town, in cooperation with the Sutton Economic Development Corporation, developers and local real estate agencies joined forces to promote Sutton as a great place to live and provide visitors to the Home Show with information about the possibilities for settling in our area.”

The Gallery thought it would be interesting to suggest to its artist members that they create works based on Sutton Going Green. Through diverse media ranging from photography to sculpture, painting and mixed media, the artists interpret the theme in a multitude of ways. “This exhibition definitely offers a new way of looking at all the attributes that attract people to Sutton,” said Mr. Cousineau.

The exhibition continues until May 18.

The Galley is located at 7 Academy in Sutton. The Gallery and offices are open from Thursday to Sunday, from 11 am to 5 pm.

Source : Catherine Audet for Arts Sutton Gallery
450.538.2563 info@artssutton.com www.artssutton.com

Live Jazz Featured in Knowlton
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The Barr Family - bringing Live Jazz to Knowlton!One of Knowlton’s best kept secrets, and a real treat for visitor’s, is the Saturday night Jazz performances at the Relais Restaurant in the Auberge Knowlton.

The live performances take place from 6:30 to 9:30 on Saturday eveningand is a great occasion to enjoy an evening of dining in the historical Inn while listening to some great jazz from the classics of the 1940’s to easy listening Jazz.

Visitors are often asking where to go in Knowlton on weekends to enjoy dinner and live music, or just to hear live music while enjoying a glass of red wine with friends!

The cozy Relais Restaurant, with it's antique decor and decorations featuring local history, is the ideal spot to get comfy in the rich wooden tones of the restaurant and listen to fine Jazz music.

The Saturday Evening Jazz features John Barr on piano with Nicholas Barr on clarinet and Christopher Barr on trumpet. Amazingly, the accomplished musical group consist of two members who are comfortable doing a Benny Goodman Stomp but aren’t yet old enough to drive!

Nicholas, on clarinet, is 14 years old and won first prize in the Victoriaville music competition last year. He is currently studying with Marianne Croteau of the McGill Chamber Orchestra. Christopher,11, on trumpet, is studying under Manon Lafrance of the renowned Canadian Brass. The mother of Nicholas and Christopher is also an accomplished musicial and vocalist; Laura Barr has a Bachelor of Music, McGill. This is one family with a progressive musical gene!!

Piano, clarinet and muted trumpet create some sweet sounds and songs like “I got Rhythm” a Gershwin jazz standard, and “It’s all Right with Me” one of Frank Sinatra’s classic tunes. The 1940’s were an incredible time for Jazz music with artists like Lennie Tristano, Duke Ellington, Lee Konitz, Coleman Hawkins and Mary Lou Williams making some of the most memorable music of our time!

Knowlton visitors and residents are indeed lucky to have a chance to enjoy a glass of wine, or a hot French Onion soup or a full dinner at the Auberge Knowlton and be treated to live performances by such young rising musical talents.

On alternating Saturday nights the Jazz is performed by Yaakov Ludmir playing piano. Yaakov is currently studying music at CEGEP Vanier and is another young man who is showing a deep talent and appreciation for the genre. There is nothing more beautiful and intensely personal as listening to live Jazz and solo piano and both The Barr Family and Yaakov Ludmir create dramatic yet peaceful sounds so soothing in these stormy times.

The Relais Restaurant in the Auberge Knowlton is home to Saturday Night Jazz in Knowlton.Sitting down with friends and dinner or a drink while listening to musicians deliver Jazz music also ensures you get your weekly recommended allowance of hip coolness which has been proven to promote well-being!

As Frank Sinatra said : “I'm not one of those complicated, mixed-up cats. I'm not looking for the secret to life.... I just go on from day to day, taking what comes.” And of course in the words of Duke Ellington ““It Don't Mean a Thing If It Ain't Got That Swing”!

Jazz every Saturday night at Le Relais 6:30 to 9:30. The Relais is located in Downtown Knowltons prestigious Auberge Knowlton at 286 Knowlton. Road, across from the Knowlton Gallery at the four-way stop. Info: 450-242-6886

Brome Lake To Be Sold For Bio-Fuel
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Draining Brome Lake Began Today!The complete emptying of Brome Lake began this week as the Town reached an agreement to completely drain the lake and sell off every last gallon of lake water.

The Town decided that instead of spending any more money on engineers and experts to solve the problem of poor lake water quality and re-occuring blue-green algae issues they would take the brave move and sell off the entire lake, although some call the move a completely irresposible use of Brome's natural and historical resources.

Workers installed pumps on the ice to begin draining the lake in a process that would take three years. The water, rich in phosphorous, will be sold to a Magog firm to develop an exportable form of natural "Green" fuel.

Last minute negotiations by the Town of Brome Lake with BioGreenz Ltd., the International bio-fuel conglomerate, have secured a deal which would see the entire supply of the algae-ridden waters of Brome Lake being sold to the bio-fuel manufacturer in return for over $920 Million dollars.

The entire liquid supply of Brome Lake, all the water, is being sold to a local Townships company who plans to drain the lake in order to make a new, hyper-powerful bio-diesel in a move that shows Brome Lakes serious approach to going Green.

But some residents are upset that Going Green suddenly means Going Dry!

The algae-rich water of Brome Lake are going to be used to create a valuable resource as opposed to the yearly problems the lake has caused; but the new deal means that within three years the lake will be nothing but a dry crater filled with nothing but a mixture akin to soupy bran muffin mix filled with cigarette butts and beer bottles and golf balls and plastic ducks from years of ice fishing and fund-raisers and duck races near the lake!

The rich pea-soup of Brome Lake is actually worth more than Crude Oil say experts at BioGreenz!The blue-green algae that pollutes many Quebec lakes and ponds has been a growing problem but Brome Lake is the first municipality to realize that they may be sitting on a Billion Dollar Asset and has decided that it may be best to sell the entire lake than try and solve the issue of yearly pollution! Blue-green algae is suddenly being hailed by International Scientists as the newest bio-fuel miracle-component as well as potentially a disease-fighting cancer-bashing natural wonder!

Relatively high oil prices, advances in technology, and the Lac Brome administration's increased emphasis on renewable fuels are attracting new interest in a potentially rich source of biofuels: algae. A number of startups are now demonstrating new technology and launching large research efforts aimed at replacing hundreds of millions of gallons of fossil fuels by 2010, and much more in the future.

Algae makes oil naturally. Raw algae can be processed to make biocrude, the renewable equivalent of petroleum, and refined to make gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, and chemical feedstocks for plastics and drugs. Indeed, it can be processed at existing oil refineries to make just about anything that can be made from crude oil. This is the approach being taken by startup BioGreenz Ltd. based in Magog, Quebec.

These biofuel plants will be used to turn Brome Lake, also known by BioGreenz as sludgehoney, into a valuable commodity!Alternatively, strains of algae that produce more carbohydrates and less oil can be processed and fermented to make ethanol, with leftover proteins used for animal feed. This is one of the potential uses of algae produced by the heavily polluted Brome Lake.

At first, the Town and groups such as Renaissance Lac Brome were spending much time and money to find solutions for solving the annual closures of the lake due to blue-green algae. But fortunately, smarter heads prevailed when it was decided by the majority of the town that perhaps the algae was a natural resource that should be exploited. Instead of trying to fight what Mother Nature delivered and what had until now been considered merely a pollution, the "Brainiacs of Brome" came to understand that this horrid mixture of toxic liquid could actually be worth something.

One Brome Lake Official, speaking to us on guarantee of anonymity, stated: "This pea soup we call a lake has been a real pain in the Aspen, Colorado!" he cursed, "We have angry residents, angry businesses, angry waterfront property owners all complaining that we need to do something to clean up the lake! But report after report and consultation after consultation all lead to one conclusion: cleaning up the lake will cost millions of tax dollars!"

Last year, the firm BioGreenz Ltd., approached residents and officials with a somewhat unique and innovative plan: instead of fighting the blue-green algae, why not harness the sloppy toxic stew to make inexpensive fuel so we could drive our vehicles for much less cost. The proposed new line of bio-fuel, tentatively called Brome Lake Gas™ would, according to BioGreenz Ltd spokeswoman Aineedhia Baleevit, be able to supply enough bio-diesel to operate 40,000 vehicles for a year.

"That of course, depends on the size of the vehicle being fuelled. We calculated that if we could fuel 40,000 regular vehicles for a year it would be equivalent to only 5 of the monster trucks that show up at the Big Brome Fair", stated Baleevit.

Brome lake is know for The Big Brome Fair, one of the premier agricultural fairs in Eastern Canada, and the highlight of many vacationers visit to the Eastern Townships. The startling news delivered by BioGreenz Ltd that the Brome Fair’s yearly Tractor Pull Event used more fossil fuels on a Sunday afternoon than all the residents of Stagecoach, Sugar Hill and Mount Echo used in an entire year combined lead one brave Brome Fair insider to promise:
"We strive to be an environmental fair! If the factualities of this firms facts are firmly factual then we promise to make big changes so we reduce the impact our entertainment has on the environment!" he said, "Even if that means turning the tractor pull event into a donkey pull!"

The cycle of natural algae and pollution into good fun energy!A random survey of patrons of The Thirsty Boot, outside of Knowlton near the Beaver Pond Motel, found that most people were not impressed at the thought of watching stubby-legged donkeys pulling cement blocks across the grandstand field instead of the loud honkin’ tractors!

"Shoot!" exclaimed one patron as he took a break from his wobbly Karaoke singing, "If I wanted to watch mutant asses stumbling across a public stage up to their knees in mud I could just go to a monthly council meeting!"

Right Said Fred! But surely this comment, by one of Knowltons’ wanna be Canadian Idol hopefuls, was a lighthearted jab at the Town leaders who have been busy this year trying to bring all aspects of the town together. From the Chamber of Commerce, to the Main Street program, to the residents and volunteers who work so hard together in the re-building of our precious town, the Town of Brome has ramped up their efforts to bring cohesion and positivity to Brome Lake.

This new initiative to sell off the water of Brome Lake in order to create a source of fuel is one example of how our leaders have chosen a positive direction for the local economy. Of course, not everyone affected by the selling off of the 400 million gallons of lake water is feeling so happy. One business owner, and lakeside property owner, was less than impressed by the new deal which would see the draining of Brome Lake within 3 years. He has since launched a lawsuit against the Provincial Government and the Town of Lac Brome.

"They want to drain the lake and within 3 years it will be nothing but a gloomy crater with only 12 inches of stinky muck full of worm colonies at the bottom! We used to have motorboats and sailboats and swimmers in the lake and they all co-existed with the toxic muck, duck poop and poisonous, stinky water just fine! What kind of message are we sending out now?!" asked the bare-chested resident.

The sale of the lake water, which has yet to be approved by both Federal and Provincial Governments, is expected to receive final acceptance by both Government Departments in charge of the Environment and Economic Development within 10 days, once the officials return from their 8 week holiday.

This means that the trucks from the Magog firm will soon begin showing up at the bridge beside the Auberge Quilliams to begin pumping the algae-rich waters of Brome Lake to transport it to the Magog treatment plant. The pumper trucks will be arriving at a rate of 300 trucks per day to begin draining the lake and hauling the phosphorous rich waters to Magog for processing into bio-diesel.

Discreet pumping stations will be placed in front of many Lakeside residents waterfront properties! Residents between Highway 10 and The Quilliams are not too impressed by the addition of 600 truck trips per day destined to pass in front of their once quiet homes on Lakeside Road. However, the fact that the royalties on this deal earned by TBL, which will amount to over $60,000 per resident per year for the next 3 years, will likely defer any anger residents currently have over traffic disruptions and loss of the lake.

The entire volume of Brome Lake will be completely drained, leaving only a small patch of mud in the central deep zones, within 3 years.

The good news is that the new partnership with BioGreenz Ltd will mean that every card-carrying Brome Lake resident will be eligible to recive the Brome Lake Gas bio-diesel at only 6 cents per litre. As an added bonus every resident will receive four free tickets to the annual Brome Fair Ass Pull!


April Fools!

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