Jay Karmali shows off some fancy legwork during a break-dance demonstration hosted by Manny Christjansen and Salmon Arm’s Fancy Panthers at Uptown Askew’s. (File photo)

Jay Karmali shows off some fancy legwork during a break-dance demonstration hosted by Manny Christjansen and Salmon Arm’s Fancy Panthers at Uptown Askew’s. (File photo)

Gondwana Gallery reopening under new ownership

Business Spotlight/Leah Blain

The doors at Gondwana Gallery have been closed for a few weeks but will soon be reopened as Gondwana Gallery & Gifts.

The expanded name gives a hint of what to expect in the store.

“We’ll have the same items, but we’re expanding into giftware. We’ll have jewelry from all over and local items,” says new owner Debbie Shoucair Proznick

The jewelry section includes everything from stick earrings and stone jewelry to 925 sterling silver.

Part of the store will be dedicated to the metaphysical.

“We’ll have crystals, incense, Buddhas and healing stones; the stones are empowering. Meditation pillows and blankets are coming.”

The store will carry items such as pashminas, candles, Himalayan salt lamps, African bolga baskets and bamboo socks. Animal lovers will like the variety of decorative bears, owls, elephants, giraffes, butterflies, dragonflies and lizards.

“We have neat hats, lake cottage items like decorative paddles, signs, home decor, soapstone carvings, wind chimes, love-knots – they make great wedding presents, and some musical instruments.”

Debbie says she wants the store to be a welcoming and relaxing space, for everyone, including (especially) for husbands who don’t feel like shopping.

“This is my ‘man cave,'” she says, pointing to an alcove that used to house the dressing rooms. “I’m going to put in a little table, chairs and a TV. The men can sit here while the women shop. It’s all about the experience. When you come in here I want you to have a good experience,” says Debbie. “I’m a people person and I love to make people happy.”

The opening date isn’t set, but Debbie hopes to be open before the end of January. Winter hours will be 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. Gondwana Gallery & Gifts is located at 110 Lakeshore Drive.

Rafael’s Stitchery closes

Rafael’s Stitchery, which was on Alexander Street, has closed its doors.

“I’ve owned it for seven years and I’ve been doing this work for 10,” says Rafael Froese. “I did love it, but I’m looking for new adventures. It’s time for a change.”

Rafael says being self-employed, she didn’t get much time to enjoy the summers, something she hopes she can do this year.

“I was working 12 to 13 hours in the summer. Summers are gruelling and I love to go outside.”

Rafael isn’t sure what her future will hold and she is taking a little time off to decide what to do next.

“This town has been really good to me. I appreciate everyone’s patronage over the years. It’s been an honour and everyone has been so kind.”

A realtor’s contributions recognized

The Okanagan Mainland Real Estate Board (OMREB) honoured three Okanagan realtors whose dedication to their communities they found especially worthy of note. Of the three, one is from Salmon Arm.

Jim Grieve was recognized for contributing his time to a wide range of community groups: Rotary, the Shuswap Hospital Foundation, Community Futures, Salmon Arm Economic Development Society, numerous sports teams and Aspiral Youth, an organization that helps at-risk youth.

SASCU ends 2018 on a charitable note

The holidays are over but several organizations around town are still enjoying the Christmas spirit thanks to SASCU’s generosity.

SASCU helped make Christmas brighter for the Salvation Army, Second Harvest, Eagle Valley, Sorrento and North Shore food banks, and the Salmon Arm Women’s Shelter and Lighthouse Emergency Shelter by giving them a combined $10,500.

“It has become traditional for SASCU to give something extra to food banks in light of the holidays. This year SASCU’s Community Support Committee of the board included local emergency shelters in the year-end donations,” says Barry Delaney, CEO of SASCU Financial Group. “SASCU staff held two Christmas Sweater Fundraiser Days, one for the Shuswap Christmas Car Giveaway recipients and one for the food banks.”

State of the City Address

The Salmon Arm Chamber of Commerce is hosting the annual mayor’s State of the City Address. Mayor Alan Harrison will talk about his vision for Salmon Arm for 2019, from 11:45 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 30 at the Prestige Harbourfront Resort.

Cost is $30 per person. Seating is limited. RSVP to admin@sachamber.bc.ca or phone 250-832-6247 before Jan. 22.

Chamber mixer

Salmon Arm Chamber members are invited to a ‘member mixer’ on Thursday, Jan. 31 from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. at Don Cherry’s Sports Grill at the Prestige Harbourfront Resort. No RSVP is necessary.

Try break-dancing

If your New Year’s resolution is to get fit and/or get out of your comfort zone, you could try an all new adult break-dancing and yoga class or hip hop yoga (both classes are for ages 18-plus).

Classes are at the gym in Bastion Elementary School. Call or text Manny Christjansen at 250-803-1652 for more information.

Salmon Arm Observer