Community Blog

This is where you can find a collection of articles written by our members. Most of these articles have appeared in the Beaver Creek DAM, our Newsletter.

Bugs of Beaver Creek: Ants


I use the term “bugs” in the title to encompass all insects, arachnids, and other non-insect arthropods. Bugs pollinate our plants, mix and aerate our soil, dispose of carrion and dung, feed on pests and provide food for other life forms. In return, many of us fear them, swat or squish them, spray them with poisons, or at best ignore them. It must be said that we depend upon bugs far more than they depend on us. Indeed, if they were to suddenly disappear it is doubtful whether the human species would be able to survive as we do, if at all.

There is a group of insects that has colonized almost every terrestrial habitat on the planet, and consequently there are a lot of them here at Beaver Creek. They were the first insect I sighted this spring and are fascinating animals if you take a closer look:

Oak, Quercus

Giant oak with man.

Beaver Creek has three varieties of oak. The oaks along the road are red oaks. The oak between Block Five and Block Six is a white oak. And the oak in the field beside Block Nine is a bur oak. There is also a bur oak near the fire pit and in among the sumac behind Block Two.

In his book, Oak: The Frame of Civilization, William Logan emphasizes the critical relationship humanity has had with oak since the ending of the last ice ages about 15,000 years ago. This is an excellent book and is available from the library, call number 634.9721. Most of the information in this article is extracted from this book.

Community Centre Makeover Underway

View from foyer

Over the weekend the Marketing Committee had our Community Centre closed so that they could get started on giving it a makeover. It is now Monday and is open for business. Note that this marks the end of "phase 1" and that work will continue through this week and next weekend to bring a close to "phase 2." Be sure to check out our 2008 Community Centre Makeover gallery to see before, during, and after pictures, or better yet stop in for a visit.

Help restore Laurel Creek forest on Earth Day

Earth Day Canada

The tenth Sunoco Earth Day will be held on April 19, 2008 at the GRCA conservation area on Westmount Road just off Northfield Drive in Waterloo. The event, sponsored by Sunoco and the Suncor Energy Foundation, runs from 10am to 1pm and is free. Beaver Creek's Green Committee is organizing members who are interested in attending and participating as a group.

Trees and shovels will be provided to those who want to help plant 1,000 native trees such as white pine, sugar maple and red oak. They will replace some of the two hectares worth of red pines which had to be removed last fall because of an infestation of pine shoot beetles.

Director informs The Record of ABCP Woes

On April 10, Patrick Hunt spoke with The Record regarding the $93,000 of our capital expenditure fund that was invested by Canaccord in asset-backed commercial paper and frozen since last August.

Patrick Hunt, who sits on Beaver Creek's board, said in an interview the fund is used for repairs and upkeep at the 28-year-old housing complex.

Unlike many housing co-ops, Beaver Creek was in good financial shape, he said in an interview.

"In a pinch we could have survived this," Hunt said, but added, "somebody is responsible for this. It wasn't us."

He believes small investors weren't treated with the same respect as large ones.

"Everybody with a lot of clout and money was able to pull out of this, but the little guy couldn't," he said. "Ninety-three thousand dollars is a lot . . . to us."


Today, I am very proud and happy to be a member of Beaver Creek. Beaver Creek is much more than just somewhere to live; we are a community, almost like an extended family. I was reminded of a couple of posters I have seen around, which I want to purchase for our Community Centre, that describe how to build a community and how to build a global community. Looking over the lists, I am proud to say that many members at Beaver Creek are actually actively building our community by doing the actions listed. There are some items that I am not currently doing, but want to. Take a look at the lists and see what you can do to build your community.

Going to Ottawa

About $93,000 of Beaver Creek's $183,000 capital expenditure fund invested with Canaccord is stuck in frozen ABCP. Steve Furino, Beaver Creek's Treasurer, has been asked to speak at the House of Commons finance committee's special hearing on ABCP tomorrow. Learn more in today's Globe and Mail or click the read more link.

2008 Earth Hour Wrap-up

Roll your own

On Saturday a group of members, their families and guests celebrated Earth Hour together. We gathered in our Community Centre where we were able to roll our own beeswax candles which we lit and took for a walk through the darkened streets. Arriving back at our Community Centre, a member told entranced young and old with some stories. Members were invited to stay for a cup of tea and discuss how we could make Beaver Creek even more "green."

Special thanks to Candlepower for donating the candle supplies, to Ryan Chen-Wing from The Record for covering the event, and to all of the members who helped out or attended this event. Be sure to check out our 2008 Earth Hour gallery for more photos from the event.

Send a message to the housing minister today

I just received the following urgent notice from CHF Canada E-news. Please consider sending a letter and letting your voice be heard on the topic of affordable housing.

Help Canadians looking for affordable housing. In early April, provincial and territorial housing ministers plan to meet in Ottawa with Monte Solberg, the federal minister responsible for CMHC. This gives co-op members another chance to ask the government to help the four million Canadians who need affordable homes.

You can send a letter asking Minister Solberg to take action on affordable housing.

But act quickly. This meeting is rumoured to be taking place on April 2. The federal minister did not attend the last provincial-territorial housing ministers meeting in Vancouver on February 6, but promised to meet with his counterparts within 60 days. Act now and send a message to Monte Solberg.

Earth Hour Plans

This Saturday, March 29, starting at 7:00 p.m., members of Beaver Creek Housing Co-operative will turn off their lights for an hour in the cause of fighting climate change.

Members and their invited friends will make their own hand-rolled beeswax candles to light for a community walk, followed by story telling for all ages and a discussion on "greening" their housing community.

How are you going to spend Earth Hour?

Bee's wax for the event provided by Candlepower (519)886-0662.