New deli eatery in Onanole

We’ve got a new eatery in Onanole this summer.  Sisters Quinn and Jasmin Greavett have launched an alternative to the often poor quality, fast food chains that typically accompany tourism travel routes and destinations.  As many writers and investigative journalists are uncovering, our “Fast Food Nation” does not often provide the most nutritious foods, and many of them have high food miles associated with them (imported from other countries with a high carbon emission associated with the distance they travel to get to our province).  If you are interested, you can learn more about FOOD MILES and calculate food miles for individual food items.

Quinn describes their approach, “.. .When creating our menu, we really wanted to have something that was a bit different that people would be interested in trying, and that would taste great.  We wanted to branch away from the typical burger and create a menu where each burger had a distinctive flavour.  All our burgers, sandwiches, and deli salads are home-made and we use only fresh ingredients, which we try to purchase locally.”

This is great.  The tourism industry needs more of this type of food service and entrepreneurial approaches.  It supports local producers, is better quality and nutrition, and offers alternatives to the fast food formulas and supply chains that often accompany many restaurants and chains.  We wish them well.   “…Our deli salads are family favorites and some we have created.  We basically got the menu ideas from things that Jasmin and I like, and we also did a few trial and error taste tests on people and adjusted our menu based on their feedback.  But, so far, so good!”

The following is their current menu (obviously, subject to change, as they learn and get feedback from customers).  We hope that you will try out the new Deli in Onanole this summer.


Mexi burger – a spicy beef burger served with guacamole, refried beans, salsa and cheese

Greek burger – beef patty served with feta cheese, tatziki sauce, fresh cucumber, red onion,lettuce and tomato

Canadian burger – a beef patty mixed with a sweet maple bbq sauce topped with cheddar cheese, smokey maple bacon, and fried onions

Classic burger – our most traditional beef patty lightly seasoned

Chicken burger – an all white meat chicken breast served with mayo, lettuce, tomato and onion

Veggie burger – a vegetable patty made with fresh cick peas, cous cous, spinach, cilantro and spices.

Thai Tuna burger – tuna mixed with ginger, soya, flax seeds, and carrots served with a home made teriyaki sauce


Stephen Fearing creates memorable evening in Onanole

Stephen Fearing House Concert, Onanole, Manitoba. June 6, 2009     

Stephen Fearing House Concert, Onanole, Manitoba. June 6, 2009

Onanole, Manitoba ( Canada) perched on the southern  boundary of Riding Mountain National Park is certainly receiving its fine share of music.  Last night (June 6, 2009) was a rare delight, in which multiple Juno award-winning Stephen Fearing roared into Onanole, polished up his Linda Manzer-made guitar, put on his nails, and sped us across time and landscape.  From Nashville to Guelph, from Ireland to Newfoundland, and from vocals to instrumentals, this was a night to remember.  Perched on a stool, with about 45 rapt house concert guests eagerly and appreciatively settled in from Brandon, Neepawa, Dauphin and many other local communities, we came to listen to someone who has a passion for excellence in the ways that words and melodies come together.  Just listen to how long and loud the applause is after each song.

To be able to spend a few hours with Stephen Fearing is to be witness to a great songwriter, but it is also a delightful experience to be close to a man who is full of humour and care.  I am sure that the families, the folkies, the young musicians, and the elder musicians who were “in the house” with Stephen Fearing last night will remember this evening.  These songs bring to mind images of riding the rails, traveling the highways, entering the souls and personalities of ordinary people but through the extra-ordinary creative songwriting and musical crafting of Stephen Fearing.  And, we are fiercely happy and proud of this amazing Canadian.  And, thank goodness for the generosity of these artists, who agree to come to our homes, and make themselves accessible to perform.  There is nothing quite like live roots music. 

Audio Interview with Stephen Fearing

Listen to this short audio interview with Stephen (morning of June 7)  between Celes Davar and Stephen, which ends with his playing of a beautiful and haunting new song about a recent event off the coast of Newfoundland


Video highlights from House Concert



Link to the entire House Concert (audio recording)

The house concert is licenced under Creative Commons as an Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 Canada Licence. Basically, this means that you are free to listen to it, but not distribute it, modify it, or charge anything for it.  (Please respect this.)

The Stephen Fearing Onanole House Concert (Audio)

Tom Wilson pushes March Lions away with song-writing presence

Tom Wilson performs at Home Routes House Concert in Onanole      Tom Wilson performs at Home Routes House Concert in Onanole


Tom Wilson is a tall man.  He has a big voice.  His presence is large.  His song-writing is full-on.  Everything about Tom Wilson causes you to remember him.  His paintings are delightful.  Over 40 people enjoyed Tom’s humour, songs, and his music at a Home Routes House Concert that was full of  insights, great live music, and laughter.  It seemed that we went down the road of musical Canadiana, into the trials and tribulations of growing up, and in and out of personal stories from Tom’s unique perspective and insights.

Tom and Angela (his roadie who also does his website and Stephen Fearing’s website) were storm-stayed an extra day at our place.  I asked Tom for a few moments of his time to do a short podcast, before they left for Winnipeg.  He obliged.  His words are full of experience.  He sang the beautiful haunting Stoned while sitting at the dining table and left his song-writing mark….moving on to other Home Routes House Concerts in Manitoba this week, and a tour in the US with Cowboy Junkies over the next couple of weeks.  Thank you Tom!

Listen to the short podcast with him and the lovely version of Stoned:

Let us know what you think!  Fill out the comments section below, if you are inclined to give us feedback.  

Riding Mountain Biosphere Forum features Laura Rance

On March 20 & 21, the Riding Mountain Biosphere Reserve facilitated a first of its kind workshop. Attending were a number of invited stakeholders including scientists, licenced tourism operators, local agriculture producers, government enablers, academics from various institutions doing research about biosphere reserves, national park and biosphere reserve staff. Their purpose – to assess issues relating to research, communication, education, and community engagement and develop priorities for these different issues to guide the biosphere reserve efforts.

Over the period of two days, participants had opportunities to listen to several excellent presentations about local economic issues, sustainable tourism, and conservation within the biosphere. Solid data, provocative questions, and great examples from each of these three areas set the tone for good quality discussions.

In a positive manner, and with genuine effort to reach out and begin to develop relevance and engage local stakeholders, the workshop focused on creating dialogue between the various participants present as to what kind of research and other issues they felt the Riding Mountain biosphere reserve should be addressing.

Community Engagement

One of the most significant outcomes was the recommendation and realization by everyone that active communication engagement (involvement in a variety of ways – education, involvement in various projects, communication about the biosphere reserve) is a critical priority. While research will continue to be initiated and carried out, it has to be done in the context of a high priority and investment into community engagement. In my view, this was a very successful workshop.


Laura Rance, editor of the Cooperator – Keynote speaker

To kick off the two-day workshop, the Biosphere Reserve team invited a well-respected journalist Laura Rance, to deliver a keynote address. Laura is the Editor of The Cooperator, a Western Canadian publication for farmers and farmer news. Her talk was outstanding, providing a clear framework for some complex issues that we facing. Alternating between thoughtful, grounded, articulate, and passionate insights and education about agriculture, ecology, and economics, Laura wove a magical journey that really set the tone for great discussions. Laura’s talk is available at the following link – take the time to listen to this wonderful journalist share her passions and knowledge and experiences within Manitoba.  


For the techies in the audience, you’ll be interested to note that the talk was recorded on an iPhone 3G, with an app called Happy Talk Professional Recorder.  I am impressed with the quality of the recording, and happily recommend it.


Video Interview

I also interviewed Laura about her talk and what she was observing during the two days of this workshop. This short video provides her responses and insights, and are well worth viewing. Thank you Laura!


I feel that we were very fortunate to be able to have Laura with us for a couple of days.  She is a very busy person.  The following link gives you access to her presentation in March of this year, to the PEI Adapt Council, as well as several other very good presentations (all summarized in one pdf document).  Laura explains the inter-cropping technique that Saskatchewan farmer Colin Rosengren is using in this article called Crop Husbandry Saves Input Costs.  –Laura Rance.  March 13, 2009.

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