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Culinary school a boon for the community

News this week that Grande Prairie Regional College (GPRC) has begun exploring its options to establish a culinary school in Jasper is great news for our tiny mountain community Not only would it bring young, passionate minds to town, but it could also prove to be a financial windfall for the Jasper Royal Canadian Legion, which has struggled financially since ÉcoleDesrochers moved out of the building and in ...

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See ya later, Jasper

How do you say goodbye when everyone’s telling you you’re coming back? Six weeks ago, I handed in my letter of resignation, ending my three-year tenure as editor of the Fitzhugh and my four and a half year career with the paper. My last day was April 27, making this my last issue to hit the newsstands in restaurants, shops and hotels around town. It’s a hard pill to swallow after dedicating myself to this b ...

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‘That could never happen to me’

It was a Wednesday last February. When I woke up, it seemed like any normal morning—then I looked at my phone and discovered several missed calls from my family. This was definitely not going to be a normal day. There was a voicemail from my sister in Halifax. The tone of her voice sent chills through my body. I have never heard her sound so worried and stressed. Something was wrong. In short, she asked me ...

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Breaking the silence: opening up about mental illness

In 1994, during a particularly hectic time at the start of my human services career, I was admitted to a psychiatric hospital for the first time. I was sleep deprived and overwhelmed with religious thoughts. I reached out to people in my life who I thought could help. I thought that if each of those people put their hands on me, that finally I could sleep. In the end, they weren’t able to help, and I wasn’t ...

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Stand up for healthy minds

Depression is a disorder, not a decision. Often people who have never suffered from a mental illness forget this truth, instead treating depression as a choice that can be cured with a little positive thinking. “Be positive,” they say, oblivious to the fact that those words merely place blame on the person who’s suffering. That’s the stigma that surrounds mental illness. In our society, it is viewed as a pe ...

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Vandals leave their mark on the library saga

There’s nothing quite like adding insult to injury. Just as we were about to publish a story about the library and cultural centre nearing its final completion—three years overdue and $1.5 million over budget—the fax machine churned out a press release from the Jasper RCMP, informing us that the long beleaguered building was vandalized during the early morning hours of April 19. The construction site was br ...

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No one’s above the law

So far, there’s no proof that former finance minister and West Yellowhead MLA Robin Campbell directly lobbied the provincial government in his new role as president of the Coal Association of Canada. Truth is, even if he did, it likely wouldn’t have helped him much, considering his party was annihilated in last year’s election, leaving him with few friends in the legislative assembly. However, there does se ...

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Celebrating Jasper’s volunteers

When was the last time you high-fived a volunteer? If it’s been awhile, consider next week an opportunity to play catch up. April 10-16 is National Volunteer Week—a week dedicated to celebrating Canada’s non-profit organizations, charities and volunteers. In Jasper, there are plenty of people deserving of a high five. Our community has a thriving volunteer workforce, spanning the gamut from hockey coaches t ...

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Jasper Victim Services Perspective

As the coordinator of the Jasper Victim Services Unit, Paul Schmidt is on call at all hours of the day, ensuring that someone is always available to console and assist victims of tragic accidents and crimes in Jasper National Park. In this monthly column, Schmidt will talk about some of the issues he sees. He won’t speak for victims, but will address the issues from a victim services perspective, drawing on ...

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Trail remains a mystery

Jasper’s getting a $65.9 million walking and biking trail, but no one seems to know where the trail’s heading or why it’ll cost four times our annual municipal budget to develop. The federal budget was announced last week and included the news of a pricey new trail in Jasper National Park, but despite our best efforts, no one can tell us anything about it. First, Parks Canada directed our questions to the D ...

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