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August 2020

July 2020

Work resumes at Ashkelon Gardens

It has been two years now since important work began in the Ashkelon Gardens behind the library with the necessary felling of trees.

Hundreds of trees there were infested with the Ash Borer and the Dutch Elm disease. These trees were dangerous for people who were walking in the area (from the possibility of falling branches or trees) and  even constituted a fire hazard. The city requested our  expert contractor, Nadeau Foresterie Urbaine, to prepare an inventory of the affected trees. In total,  some 300 trees were cut we cleared approximately 21,000 buckthorn plants and bushes, a species that interferes with healthy tree growth. We intend to plant up to 600 new trees.

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This week work proceeded on cutting all of the vines from the rented fence that has been surrounding and protecting people from the work area. Once this is completed our Public Works Department will then contact the fence contractor to remove it. We are  preparing signage   that explains one must enter at their own risk since there are many stumps that people can trip on if they aren't careful. 

IMG_8552Next week the last of three poison ivy treatments will be administered.  A couple of weeks after this application, workers will begin to remove the balance of the buckthorn and then finally plant the remainder of the trees we originally planned to compensate for what we lost.. The work will be completed in its entirety during the early fall.   


CLSC Test Centre deserves a thumbs up; appointment only system to be instituted August 10

I usually go for my blood tests a few times a year at the CLSC René Cassin at Quartier Cavendish. In the past year they extended their hours from 7:30 am to 9:30 am, to 11:30 am, and added the two weekend days. It could not  have been better. Then COVID-19 hit and people like me avoided locations like this and put blood tests on hold.à

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In full protective gear as I head to the test center.

 

The  fact that my last set of tests were some eight months ago concerned  me, so today I went back with my requisitions.   I was told that some people were arriving as early as 6 am to get a good timeslot, many of whom not properly social distancing. That was not a route I  chose. I turned up at 7:30 am by which time the herd of masked men and women were told to leave the inside of the building and form a line outdoors. I waited until the line disappeared and the security guard handed me a piece of paper with a number and a 9:30 am appointment time.

 

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Is this lineup for a rock concert or blood tests?

 

I  returned  at  that  time, was told to go inside and the process from  there went fairly quickly. Only one person having blood drawn at a time. But with a second wave coming, the CIUSS West  Central  Montreal has just announced a new appointment only procedure. This will ensure that they can allow enough space for distancing by having as few people as possible in the waiting rooms. Walk-in visits will no longer be permitted.

 As of August 10, anyone who wants to make an appointment at one of  the CLSC test centres to have blood drawn or other samples tested must go to CLICSANTE.CA. Then they should choose “Blood test and specimens” and enter their postal code. Clic Santé will propose an appointment, which may not be for the same day. Since some people may find it difficult to gain access to this website, and in order to ensure a smooth transition, the CLSCs can also be phoned to book an appointment.

A statement  I received says: “We understand that getting used to this change may take some time. However, given our new reality, it is important for us to implement this new system now, so that we can provide the best possible protection for our users, staff and visitors. Users can call the CLSC if they have any questions about the new appointment system.”

Bravo for a wise decision.

Here are the  Test Centre locations

CLSC René Cassin

5800 Cavendish Boulevard

Montreal, Quebec H4W 2T5

514-484-7878

 

CLSC Benny Farm

6484 Monkland Avenue

Montreal, Quebec H4B 1H3

514-484-7878

 

CLSC Parc-Extension

7085 Hutchison Street

Montreal, Quebec H3N 1Y9

514-273-9591

CLSC Metro

1801 de Maisonneuve Boulevard West

Montreal, Quebec H3H 1J9

514-934-0354


High School student Elan Vigderhous launches COVID-19 themed care package business

During this pandemic, it has been heartening to see different young  people step up,

Take Elan Vigderhous for instance. The soon-to-be 15 year old Côte Saint-Luc resident  has started a home-based business called “Care Packages,” which is composed of a week's worth of COVID supplies (mask, gloves, and hand sanitizer). For every purchase, $3 goes to Hope and Cope, which has been providing compassionate, supportive, evidence-based cancer care for over three decades.  He chose that charity because his grandfather, noted musician Gideon  Vigderhous,  is now hospitalized due to an invasive cancer. 

“A while back when quarantine started and school was suspended, my father started to teach me about business and we decided to put the lessons into practice,” said Elan, a Grade 10 student at Royal Vale School in NDG. “ I decided to start a business that not only would be helpful to the clients, but I wanted to make sure I could help a charity close to home too. I liked the idea of making gift boxes that could be sent to a family member or friend, as a gift. I decided that the box should include the essentials: masks, gloves and hand sanitizer. I also added a little candy, to make it a little  sweeter.”

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Elan is putting his free time to good use.

 

Originally Elan was going to raise money for COVID-19 relief,  but  given the fact his grandfather got diagnosed with melanoma a few years ago and recently he had to go to the hospital, he opted for  Hope and Cope.

Since launching a website  at https://www.care-packages.ca, orders have started to roll in. “I enjoy running my first business, and I go to work every day working on sales, marketing, packaging and delivery,” said Elan.

See this report from Global TV.

 


Updated:Beware of mouse and rat poisoning in our parks and nearby

I wish to make pet owners aware that rat and mouse poisoning pellets  have  been found at and near  Rembrandt Park in recent days.  Dogs  often consume  things on the ground that look like food when you take them for a walk. Owners must watch them carefully.  Then there are outdoor cats. They have  nobody looking out for them.

One of my neighbours saw a torn package of green  pellets  on the ground and threw them in the garbage.  He also found a wrapper on the ground clearly labelled  as Wilsarin: Rat and Mouse Bait.

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The packaging left on the ground.

Public Security officers from Côte Saint-Luc are investigating and we have reported  this to police.

Sadly, we  have had previous cases of people who clearly hate animals of doing such a horrible thing. Please  be mindful of this situation and let me know of any suspicious activity. This also can be occurring in other parts of Côte Saint-Luc.

A family member was walking her dog near Mackle Road and Marc Chagall last month. The pooch ingested something, fell very ill the next day and had to be rushed to the vet. He almost died. It cost her $5,000 to regain his health.

 

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This is where the pellets were discovered.

 Update:

On Saturday, July 25, Public Security officers found six  new packs of the  poisoning.  They have yellow taped the areal.  A member of our Dog Owners Committee also found some fresh pellets  in the grass. They are well into the ground and difficult for our Public Works cleanup team to even pick up. We are upping the urgency of this situation to the  police as  there is clearly someone out there who wants to harm animals. I repeat  the importance of reporting to us  any suspicious behavior. It is almost as if this person wants us to know what he or she is doing. Why else are they leaving their wrappers  on the ground?

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The newly taped off area.

 

 


Isadore Goldberg Park gets marked improvements

I was so delighted last fall when Public Works Director Beatrice Newman and Foreman for Horticulture, Public Spaces & Parks Joane  Warren invited  me for a walk through Isadore Goldberg Park.

For  years Ms. Newman and I have been brainstorming on  ways to make this park more accessible. We had talked about moving the park to the vacant green space on Marc Chagall Avenue, which has been used as a parking lot for the workers at the Equinoxe construction project. Thank goodness work will end  there in November and the land must be returned to its original form.

To Ms. Newman's credit, she thought outside of the box. Why build a brand new park when we could improve the existing one? 

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The freshened up Goldberg Park.

 So last fall all the dead bushes at Isadore Goldberg were removed and a road was created from Marc Chagall leading to the park. It is gravel right now, but we hope  to pave it with cement down the line. I am glad I was able to tell  former Councillor Goldberg myself of our  plans for the park in his  name. He was really excited. Our  goal was to rededicate the park in the spring and even move  the sign, which currently sits on Kildare Road. Sadly, Isadore  passed away last winter and then COVID-19 hit.

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The gravel road provides easy access to the park.

 This summer  the Public Works team removed  all the old equipment, urban furniture and dirty sand.. Fresh sand, new equipment and some tables have been installed. The gravel road is a wonderful addition to the park. Public Works and Public Security vehicles can now properly access the park and so can residents of Marc  Chagall.

"I am so thrilled to finally pay the much-needed attention to this area," said Ms. Newman. "I'm excited for the kids in the area and now we can enter to do what we all need to do."
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Still to come are a change of lights, the installation of benches and tables,the trimming of  the trees, the removal of one tree  and finally the gardens will be revamped.
 
 
 
Thanks to Ms. Newman, Ms. Warren, Thierry Dhaisne and the rest of their team who put in such hard work.    

Portable pools: be aware of the dangers

With more portable pools in use this summer in backyards across the country, the City of Côte Saint-Luc wants the public to be aware of the dangers of drownings and take action to minimize the risk.

“Portable pools are a low-cost and easy-to-set-up alternative to in-ground pools, however many parents may underestimate the potential risks,” Mayor Mitchell Brownstein said. “By taking a few precautions, parents and caregivers can help children remain safe.

Portable poolsPortable pools include wading pools, inflatable pools and soft-sided, self-rising pools. They are sometimes referred to as kiddie pools. The following actions can minimize the drowning risk associated with portable swimming pools:

  • Only allow children to be in the pool area when an adult is present to supervise.

  • Empty portable pools immediately after use.

  • Place the pool inside a fenced-in area of the yard. 

  • Use door locks and alarms to prevent children from going from the house into the pool area without an adult.


Quebec pool safety laws state if the pool water is 60 cm (2 feet) or more in depth, fencing is required. The City of Côte Saint-Luc only gives permits for permanent pools, but recommends people keep portable pools covered or fenced when not in use.


In addition to drowning risks from portable swimming pools, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns of the spread of recreational water illnesses, or RWIs, which can spread by swallowing or having contact with contaminated recreational water. These illnesses are caused by germs such as Cryptosporidium, E. coli O157:H7, and Shigella. The CDC recommends that you drain or empty the pool, then clean the pool and allow it to dry. Once the pool is completely dry, leave it in the sun for at least four hours. Medium and larger-sized inflatable and plastic pools that cannot be emptied daily should have filters and appropriate disinfection systems that meet the same codes and requirements as full-sized swimming pools.


Further reading:

 

Ball Hockey lover finds a way to give youngsters a mini-summer camp experience

I first met David Brook about a decade ago when I started going to his dad Avi’s wonderful butcher shop on Westminster Avenue in Côte Saint-Luc. A smart young man, he had a love for sports and the law.

David recently graduated from law school, so it is reasonable to suggest that one day he might become one terrific player agent. I will have to introduce him to Allan Walsh, a man who grew up in Chomedey and CSL and is now one of the best agents in the business. Jonathan Drouin of the Habs is one of his clients.

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So what does a guy like David want to do with his summer? Exend his passion for ball hockey to kids who are itching to be active with all COVID-19 safety standards in place. Welcome to Brook’s Ball Hockey Boot Camp for children between the ages five to 11. They will be separated into two divisions based on age. The Tuesday session (3:30 pm to 5 pm) will be for children between the ages five to seven and the Thursday session ( 3:30 pm to 5 pm) is intended for children between the ages eight to 11. It begins on Tuesday July 7 and concludes on August 27.

“I have been playing competitive ball hockey for more than eight years, and I consider it my favourite hobby,” David says. “Over the years, I have noticed that not only do I and my teammates adore the game, but my nephews have come to adore it as well. Often they attend my games early enough so they can shoot around, and my nephew Mason even had his most recent birthday party at our local ball hockey rink Le Rinque, located off Decarie, near the Orange Julep.

Le Rinque only recently reopened, making it essentially the only indoor sport complex accessible during this pandemic. “COVID-19 has cost many children a summer of sport and fun and this program’s mission is to provide the children with a fun, engaging and safe environment to improve their ball hockey skills and connect/ re-connect with new and old friends.,” said David.

You can reach David to register at ballhockeymtl@yahoo.ca or at  514-770-6532.