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Horticulturalist to speak at Café Galt

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Spring has finally arrived. Saskatoons are blooming and the spicy fragrance of golden currant is floating through the coulees - a perfect time to host horticulturalist June Flanagan at Café Galt on Wednesday, May 19 beginning at 7 p.m. to learn about the natural treasures in the outdoor exhibit - the Centennial Native Prairie Plant Garden.  
Explore what is in bloom in the garden and throughout the Oldman River Valley, and get a preview of the wildflowers to come this summer during this illustrated presentation of botanical prairie jewels, followed by a guided tour of the garden with horticulturalist and author June Flanagan.
The Centennial Native Prairie Plant Garden is a partnership project for the Lethbridge & District Horticultural Society, the Alberta Native Plant Council and the Galt Museum & Archives.  After several years of planning, planting and growing, it was officially opened in September 2009.

"I love the location of the garden," says Flanagan, who designed the garden.
  "On the edge of the coulees, it is the perfect site to have a glimpse into our natural environment. When plants are blooming in the garden, you know they are also blooming in the coulees."
Jewels of the Prairie is the final Café Galt program exploring theme in the related exhibit Treasures & Curiosities on display at the Galt Museum & Archives. 

Originally scheduled to close May 20, it will now close on Monday, May 24 at 5 p.m.  
Café Galt is free with admission and for annual pass holders, and includes exhibit
access and refreshments.  Doors open at 6 p.m. for exhibit viewing.  For details
visit, call 403.320-3954, or email
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .  

—Submitted to L.A Beat

Nikka Yuko garden opens season

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The Nikka Yuko Japanese Gardens opens their season this weekend with a  variety of events.
 Beginning today at 11 a.m. Pastor George Takashima will be speaking about the experience of Japanese Canadians re-located by the Government to internment camps around Lethbridge.
 It will be followed by numerous children’s day activities from 1-3 p.m. including origami, making samurai hats and lanterns. After that, at 3 p.m., there will be a sumie demonstration, which is a type of traditional  Japanese  brush and ink painting focusing on landscapes and scenes which goes back a thousand years. It is not the same as calligraphy, an artistic representation of written characters, which patrons will  be able to see at 4 p.m. with Reverend Izumi. In between that, there will be a Bonseki demonstration at  3:30 p.m. Bonseki is the ancient  Japanese  art of creating  miniature landscapes on black lacquer using white sand, pebbles and rocks.
The Nikka Yuko Garden is celebrating Mother’s Day with several events as well. All mothers  will receive a complimentary Chrysanthemum plant. from 11-2 p.m. including fan making.
 A tea ceremony will follow at 2 p.m. and the day winds up at 3 p.m. with an ikebana demonstration, which is the ancient Japanese art of flower arrangement.

War Brides recognized in special presentation Wednesday

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It takes a special breed of toughness to pick up your entire life and move across the  ocean to a brand new country where you  only know oneBev Tosh with portrait of war bride, Vera. Photo by Bev Tosh person. But that is what  thousands of European women did during the Second World War — Canada’s war brides.
So in honour of these brave women,  in conjunction with Historic Lethbridge week,The Galt Museum is presenting a special talk featuring Calgary based speaker Bev Tosh, tomorrow (Wednesday), May 5, at 7 p.m.
Tosh has been immortalizing these women in portraits for the past 10 years and has been sharing their stories  all over Canada, the U.S and even New Zealand for the past five years.
“My mother was a war bride,”  said the New Zealand born artist, who has received numerous accolades for her work including the Woman of Vision Award from Global Television and the YWCA, the Alberta Centennial Medal, and the Distinguished Alumnus Award of Excellence (in recognition of exceptional achievement in art) by the Board of Governors of the Alberta College of Art & Design.
“Many of them fell in love with and married Canadian servicemen stationed all over the United Kingdom and some in Holland and France,” she said adding she has met with and completed portraits of over 100 of them.

Dancehall to cap off Historic Lethbridge Festival

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History is more than just sitting in a stuffy classroom, poring over dusty, musty old text books memorizing a list of dates and prime ministers and wars.
The Galt Museum is capping off Historic Lethbridge Week on May 8 with a 1940’s dance hall style dance.
“It’s definitely not sitting in a classroom. We want people to  interact with history,” said Galt Museum public relations coordinator Lori Harasem.
The exciting evening at the Galt Museum runs from 7-11 p.m.. The Herb Hick Quintet will be playing popular jazz music from the 1940s and 50s
 And if you don’t know how to dance, Maxine Strain will be giving swing dancing lessons beginning at 7:30 p.m.. There will be country  swing dancers as well
“It’s geared to  each person’s abilities whether you aren’t flexible at all or might break a hip,” laughed Lori Harasem, adding the Galt Museum highlights a decade during Historic Lethbridge week every year. Last year they held a car show in honour of the 1930’s  next year will likely be another dance  as 50s music was so much fun. And of course, the Treasures and Curiosities  exhibit will be open for viewing.
“We’re just encouraging people to come out and have fun no matter what your abilities are,” Harasem said adding it is an 18 + event  so there will be drinks served as well as a canteen serving snacks.

Galt Museum celebrates Earth Day by UPcycling

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Twelve local artists will present their ingenious creations at the Galt Museum & Archives new UPcycling Show & Sale from 10 a.m. - 9 p.m. on Earth Day: Thursday, April 22.  The Galt is also participating in BYOC [Bring Your Own Cup] for free coffee at the Galt Museum Store all day, and will host a special Café Galt session beginning at 7 p.m.
"Our UPcycling Show and Sale brings local artists together who repurpose cast-off items into beautiful or functional objects," says Community Program Coordinator Leslie Hall.  "The artists work with items such as thrifted fabric and leather to make bags and pillows, broken appliances to make sculptures and wall art, and
salvaged wood from corrals and fences to make furniture."  
Local artists featured at the UPcycling Show & Sale are Kathleen Bretzloff, Marie Gomez, Joanne from Edit Shoppe, Marlene Lacey, Ashley Markus, Jessica Orr and Dee Smith, Allen Pocha, Lindsey Grey Shimesawa, Sharon Simmers, Lynn Stevens and Laura Youngren.
In addition, Galt staff member Bobbie Fox has researched the history of waste and curated a display of historic recycled artifacts along with information on the changing way our culture has defined waste.
"Our habit of non-thoughtful consumption is certainly not the way my parents and grandparents were raised," says Hall. "In their generations, people regularly repurposed items that I consider disposable. In the 1920s, rag collectors paid people cash for their cast-off rags which were then turned into long-lasting paper. I, in contrast, pay a company to cope with recycling my cast-off everyday objects."
The evening Café Galt presentation brings professors from Lethbridge College together to host a conversation linking past, present, and future on xeriscaping, irrigation and water conservation and the "living home."
The UPcycling Show & Sale is free all day, and people who take the bus or ride their bikes will also receive free admission to the Discovery Hall and Café Galt.  The day also includes free food sponsored by The Guesthouse - a certified local "green" restaurant, and draws for locally available eco-friendly products.  For details visit or call 403.320-3954, or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .  

— Special to L.A. Beat
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