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Calgary

Sara Baillie and Taliyah Marsman. When the nation held its breath…

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This story is still fresh for many Albertans.  Just three years ago, police found the body of Sara Baillie in her Calgary home.

Her five year old daughter, Taliyah Marsman was missing.

For the next few days, people across Canada hoped and prayed that little Taliyah would somehow be found, safe.

Here’s Global News Crime Reporter Nancy Hixt with Part 1 of a 2 part podcast.. The Story of Sara and Taliyah.

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Arts

A permanent quest to find a better sounding, better playing guitar – meet Jason McGillivray, player and luthier

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At Todayville, some of us have a guitar addiction.  And so, when we can profile an Alberta guitar maker, we’re very happy to do so.  Oh, we also like video and filmmaking, so this video by ilia Photo and Cinema of Calgary’s Jason McGillivray building a beautiful McGillivray “Parlour Guitar” is an added bonus.  Learn about Jason’s journey from player and enthusiast to luthier.

“…Having played guitar since the early 80’s, I was on a permanent quest, as most musicians are, to find a better sounding, better playing, instrument than the one I had…”

By Jason McGillivray:

I am often asked “how did you get into guitar building?” For me, the appeal lies in the way lutherie combines art and science, drawing upon and exercising the left and right sides of the brain. Satisfaction is gained as the process unfolds and I combine and work down natural materials such as spruce or rosewood. The culmination is an heirloom-quality instrument that enhances the human experience of both player and listener and, as the instrument is passed on, for future generations.

Having played guitar since the early 80’s, I was on a permanent quest, as most musicians are, to find a better sounding, better playing, instrument than the one I had. Frequenting guitar shops whenever I could, I discovered factory offerings could only attain a certain level, and still maintain desired prices and production targets. I began to research guitar building, thinking in the future it would be something I’d like to pursue.

I spent ten years studying the craft, collecting tone wood, and acquiring tools, before actually building my first guitar. I learned that factory guitars and handmade guitars have fundamental differences. In the factory setting, guitar parts are mass produced in batches with speed and efficiency driving construction methods and design decisions. As the guitar moves down the line, the next piece is pulled from the bin and added to the assembly. All the components in the pile are of uniform dimensions; however wood is not a uniform material, even from the same tree. Each piece of wood needs to be evaluated and then worked to its optimum dimensions, based on its stiffness and density.

In the factory, randomly selecting components from the bin occasionally results in a combination of excellent parts, producing an exceptional guitar. This is why you can play ten factory guitars of the same model, made at the same time, and a few will excel, a few will underperform, and the rest will be average. A good hand builder, in a one-person shop, takes the mystery out of how the final product will perform. He or she has invested years collecting superb tone woods, studying the properties of wood and adhesives, and incorporating the successes, and knowledge gained from failures, of luthiers, past and present. Only the best wood is selected, and then worked to its fullest potential as it is combined with other woods, bone, and steel, to work synergistically as a unit.

While I was doing my research and collecting tone wood, I ordered an expensive, handmade guitar with an inheritance from my grandfather. This, I reasoned, would give me a benchmark to study and compare my own building progress against in the future, plus I would get that handmade tone and playability I’d been searching for. The guitar arrived six months later, and although it was nice, it just didn’t have the tone that my ear was searching for. This was the nudge I needed to kick-start my building career. Perhaps it would take many tries, but redirecting my energy from searching for my perfect guitar, to creating it, sat well with me, and so it began.

I learned from a tutor who is an experienced builder, and by self-study and experimentation.  While completing my BSc in Forest Science I had the opportunity to gain in-depth knowledge on the structural properties of wood, at a cellular level; this has served me well in understanding how to select and optimize tone wood.  Twenty years in the sawmilling and forest products industry, as a professional forester, further tempered my understanding of wood, the growing conditions required for premium tone wood, and how to break down a tree for the highest quality yield.  Attending the American School of Lutherie, in Portland Oregon, and studying the methods and approach of Charles Fox, gave me a strong foundation and I have continued to refine my sound and style.

Initially based in British Columbia, McGillivray Guitars now operates out of Calgary, Alberta, producing several commissioned instruments per year, with occasional speculative builds, the progress of which can be viewed on the website, in “On the Bench”.

Commissioned instruments are fully customizable in all aspects, including model, size, shape, scale length, string spacing, neck profile, body depth, and wood selection. If desired, an individual’s playing style, hand size, and physical conditions will be evaluated to select and guide the player to their optimum personalized instrument design.

Click to learn more about McGillivray Guitars including a full price list.

 

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Calgary

Notorious drug house shut down by Alberta Sheriffs

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From the Province of Alberta

Sheriffs shut down Calgary drug house

The Alberta Sheriffs have shut down a house that has been a source of drug activity and ongoing problems for residents of a Calgary neighbourhood.

The Safer Communities and Neighbourhoods (SCAN) unit has obtained a court order giving investigators the authority to close the house at 2000 Cottonwood Cr. SE for 90 days and impose strict conditions on the property’s use for the next five years.

“Our government is committed to using all means at our disposal to investigate, disrupt and dismantle criminal activity that endangers people in our communities. We value and have the utmost appreciation for the SCAN unit and its tireless work in ensuring Albertans are safe, secure and protected.”

Doug Schweitzer, Minister of Justice and Solicitor General

The closure took effect Sept. 17, as crews boarded up the house, changed the locks and erected a fence around the property to bar the owner and any occupants from entering for 90 days.

After the closure ends on Dec. 16, 2019, the order forbids the property owner from having any visitors or tenants for five years without prior approval from SCAN investigators. The order will remain in effect until Dec. 16, 2024.

The legal action is aimed at breaking a cycle of criminal activity at the property that has been ongoing for several years.

The conditions are among the most stringent imposed by the court since the SCAN unit’s inception in 2008. Investigators sought the five-year term, in part, because the property owner violated conditions of a previous community safety order (CSO) from October 2018.

SCAN’s latest investigation began in March 2019, in response to complaints that drug activity had resumed after the property was returned to the owner in January 2019.

SCAN investigators substantiated the complaints about renewed drug activity and gathered evidence in support of a CSO application in Court of Queen’s Bench.

Over the past two years, Calgary police have responded to 39 incidents at the property, including a fatal drug overdose in January 2018 and an assault in August 2019 that involved two men beating a resident of the house with a baseball bat and a ball-peen hammer.

The SCAN unit works with other law enforcement agencies to shut down properties being used for illegal activities. The Safer Communities and Neighbourhoods Act gives sheriffs the authority to target these problem properties through civil enforcement.

Since its establishment in 2008, Alberta’s SCAN unit has investigated more than 5,000 problem properties and issued nearly 80 community safety orders. The majority of complaints are resolved informally, by working with property owners to keep criminal activity out of the community.

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october, 2019

wed16oct6:00 pm11:00 pmBusiness of the Year Awards - Red Deer Chamber of Commerce6:00 pm - 11:00 pm Red Deer College

thu17oct6:30 pm8:30 pmACRYLIC POUR ART CLASSES6:30 pm - 8:30 pm

fri18oct7:00 pmLip Sync Battle7:00 pm MT Bo's Bar & Grill, 2310 50 Ave Event Organized By: The Outreach Centre

sat19oct9:00 am4:00 pmCoats 4 Kids & Charity Checkstop9:00 am - 4:00 pm Taylor Drive Event Organized By: The Central Alberta Crime Prevention Page

sat19oct10:00 am12:00 pmRed Deer River Naturalists Bird Focus Group Walk10:00 am - 12:00 pm MST Kerry Wood Nature Centre, 6300 45 Ave Event Organized By: Red Deer River Naturalists

sat26oct10:00 am12:00 pmRed Deer River Naturalists Bird Focus Group Walk10:00 am - 12:00 pm MST Maskepetoon Park Event Organized By: Red Deer River Naturalists

tue29oct(oct 29)1:00 amsun03nov(nov 3)1:00 amCanadian Finals Rodeo1:00 am - (november 3) 1:00 am Westerner Park, 4847A-19 Street

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