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Welcome to our Club!

Service Above Self

We meet In Person & Online
Wednesdays at 6:30 PM
Various and online
1234 Westivew
Powell River, BC
Rotary Meeting times
Rotary generally meets on Wednesday nights at 6:30pm.
We meet at different locations and sometime on Zoom.
Please contact us if you are planning to attend a meeting
and we'll let you know when and where out next meeting is.
Home Page Stories
It was a complete surprise to members of The Rotary Club of Powell River when the announcement of the Outstanding Club of the year came on the last night of the 5040 District Conference. For the first time in its 68-year history, Powell River was deemed recipient of this honour. 
Asked about the honour during his year as president, Ross Cooper replied, “I am only a representative of a club that’s very productive. The benefit of being president is at the conference, I got to lead the group of members who attended from Powell River as we all took the stage after our club’s name was announced as the winner.”
While word got back home fast, Cooper still had the satisfaction of announcing the award to the rest of the club at the first regular meeting after the conference.  Then everyone celebrated again May 17 when the embroidered banner arrived with the club’s name on it and it was presented by Ian Grant, Assistant Governor of our district. 
“It’s a confirmation of a club that operates well, is impactful to our community and to our international programs,” Cooper said. “We are very pleased. Our motto is Service above Self and it shows in the many projects our club has contributed such as the Westview Viewpoint and Rotary Pavilion at Willingdon Beach. Our club hasn’t stopped and is currently erecting a gazebo shelter at Palm Beach with another on Texada Island coming this summer.”
It was a full house at Julie’s Airport Café on April 5 for a program by four RYLA participants who shared their recent experience from March 25 to 28.
Quinn Carlson said it was the best four days of his life and talked about being involved in four different acts in the Variety Concert. Kanon Sugioka said she most enjoyed the team-building, Louise Liu loved the board games and Paige Sigouin said she most enjoyed the campfires.
Kanon presented a PowerPoint that outlined the many activities that were undertaken by the approximately 90 participants and staff.
Rotarians has lots of questions for the four students from Brooks Secondary who all responded positively about the event and were appreciative of being in attendance. 

 Our club meeting on March 15 had a busy agenda with two program speakers.
Townsite Jazz Festival founder and artistic director Paul Cummings attended our March 15 Rotary meeting and outlined the 10 ticketed concerts and guest musicians who will be attending the 2023 event. 
The music educator has long been a jazz fan and loves to expose his students to that genre. His love of jazz began when he was in Grade 9 while studying trombone at Courtenay Youth Music Camp with the likes of Phil Dwyer and Diana Krall. 
After growing up in this community and leaving for education and career opportunities, Paul moved home in 2000. He began teaching music at Brooks Secondary School and Powell River Academy of Music. He loves combining music with travel and has taken his choirs and bands on 17 international tours. 
His enthusiasm for the jazz festival he created is shown in his statement “there is nothing like it on earth,” adding that it follows the Festival of the Performing Arts, Kathaumixw and PRISMA.
Three high school will have groups open for the professionals who will be in town April 14-16.
More details can be found at
Powell River Community Foundation Alston Miller reported on the most recent Vital Signs report that was released recently. It was the third Vital Signs conducted after the initial one in 2011 and second in 2015. The third was delayed because of COVID-19.
Information is compiled from a survey of residents, organizations and Stats Can as well as other provincial and local studies and reports. 
Population is 21,496 in qathet region with13.943 in the city of Powell River.
Alston presented some of the information from the report including the top languages spoken at home after English. They were Punjabi, French, Italian and Mandarin. 
A living wage here is now $23.33 per hour, up from $16.31 six years ago.
Employment is highest in healthcare, followed by retail and construction. 
There are 3,020 people living below the poverty line, including 460 under the age of 18. Some 28 per cent of seniors are impoverished. 
70 per cent of people reported that have excellent health and wellness. 
94 per cent were satisfied with arts and culture and 83 per cent were satisfied with the community’s diversity. 97 per cent were satisfied with sports and recreation activities available. 
94 per cent shopped at Quality Foods, Freshco and Save-On. 42 per cent grew some of their own food. There are 50 farms that generate $3 millions in revenue.
26.4 per cent of all calls to police involve, thefts or B&Es, mental health issues, assaults for impaired driving. 18 people died in the last year from opioid overdoses. 
The report is available online at
Allison Boulanger and Keith Allen spoke to our club on recently to answer the question “What does Community Futures actually do?”
Allison was born and raised on Texada Island and spent 36 years with a local bank. Recognizing she wanted a change; she started working at Community Futures as business lender in 2017 and became executive director two years later when Pam Krompocker retired. She says it was the best decision she ever made.
Keith came to Community Futures in March 2020. He worked in banking in downtown Vancouver before moving to Powell River. The transition to business advising and lending has been a perfect fit for him with its more localized, grassroots level. 
Community Futures is federally funded with 48 offices in BC to assist entrepreneurs and small business owners make their dreams become a reality. They are different from banks in that they help with business planning, one-on-one meetings and workshops to ensure job creation and retention with a rural focus through local decision-making. 
Two programs they support are Export Navigator for getting product out to the wider world and Venture Connect, to help people wishing to sell their business through succession planning.
Gary Shilling spoke at a February meeting, outlining the many improvements that have been undertaken at Patricia Theatre since it has been purchased by a society, making it eligible for grants that were not possible under private ownership. 
Gary visited Powell River over a decade ago and fell in love with the area. He and his wife purchased property here and moved in in 2015. He became enamoured with the theatre and has spent many hours writing grants for funding much needed maintenance for the building that is nearly 100 years old. 
Over the past few years, the efforts have resulted in 100s of thousands of dollars coming to the project, including a private mortgage to help buy the theatre. The theatre company started in a tent further down Ash Street in the early 1900s.
The roof has been repaired and more improvements are planned, including reconstructing the original canopy on the front of the building as well as replacing the fire escape from the balcony so it can be used again for a seating area. 
Seats need to be replaced but that will require a huge amount of money. In the meantime, Gary suggested with a chuckle that people bring a pillow. 
He commended Brooks Interact for donating $250 which will go to help replace a urinal in the men’s bathroom which will cost $1,000. 
Nagi Rizk, Manager Engineering, City of Powell River, Wastewater Treatment Plant, gave a detailed progress report through a Power Point presentation to a recent February meeting.
This is the largest project ever undertaken in the history of the community, costing some $99,000,000. 
For many years the city has been out of compliance with its current wastewater treatment plant located near the ferry terminal in Westview.
The new plant will consolidate the three current ones including Townsite and Wildwood. 
Nagi shared some facts including that 4,000 loads of soil were removed from the new building site located in proximity of the old golf course. Some 7,000 cubic metres of concrete were used for the foundations. And a situation with a nesting bird caused construction to halt for three months. 
The plant is now 90% complete and testing with fresh water is taking place.
Nagi grew up in Cairo and became a Canadian landed immigrant in 1988.
He is married to Nancy (Ogden) from Powell River who he met in Toronto.
After challenging his P. Eng exams here in 1995, he started his own consulting company. He and his family have lived in California, in the San Juaquin Valley and Bay area specialising in FEMA projects. They also lived in Cranbrook and Lake Cowichan before moving back to Powell River in 2018 to accept a position with the city. 



Ellen Byrne and her husband Sean spoke to our members recently about qathet Refugee Sponsorship group that she formed in 2021 with a goal to bring a family to this region by 2024. Ellen said when the organization has collected the required $26,000, it will cover the initial start-up fees and six months of living expenses. She said with the program her group has chosen, the Blended Visa Office-Refereed Program, the federal government pays for the other six months. To date, they have raised $14,600.When the group has the money, there are different profiles from which its members choose a family they think would be good for this community. All potential refugees have been selected by the United Nations Refugee Agency and have been living in camps for several years. It can take up to four months for them to arrive in qathet region. The group is responsible for arranging housing and basic necessities, finding health care providers, enrolling children in school, connecting with community resources and provide emotional and moral support. Ellen said qathet Refugee Sponsorship group is comprised of 10 people who try to meet monthly and is always looking for new members. For more information or to donate, email and Facebook page

Katcher Guidance founder and owner Cheryl Milne shared her personal experiences with loved ones who have dementia at a January meeting held at Willingdon Creek.
In addition to information and statistics about dementia, Cheryl spoke about the journey with her father-in-law, father, both of whom have since died, and best friend.
Cheryl said her presentation was meant to be informative and not a substitute for medical advice.
She explained that every case of Alzheimer’s disease is a form of dementia, but every type of dementia is not Alzheimer’s which accounts for 60-80% of all diagnoses. Only 5-8% of people over the age of 60 will live with dementia at one stage. There is a difference between forgetting your keys and having memory loss that affects your day-to-day abilities, she explained.
Cheryl’s father-in-law Tom had Lewy Body Dementia and his wife noticed the change when he lost his sense of direction and was unable to figure out how to wrap Christmas presents or remember how to spell common words.
Her father had dementia but was not diagnosed with a specific type. Her mother noticed when he was unable to do what was pervious his meticulous banking and was overwhelmed when presented with a menu at a restaurant.
Her best friend Katie was diagnosed with Early Onset Familial Alzheimer’s at 42, a disease that her mother died from at age 52. She was a baker and found she could not follow recipes. There is a 50% chance that her three children will get the disease.
Cheryl quoted, “Life is in the present, anxiety is the fear of the future and depression is fear of the past. Joy is found in the present moment.” With all three of her loved ones, there was joy to be found in some way and she wanted people to know that they can be happy.
The Alzheimer Society of BC is running a campaign Full of Life with Dementia that includes Katie and Cheryl and its website is 
Pacific Region International Summer Music Academy president Michael Robinson spoke to our club on January 11 and was joined by founder Arthur Arnold who entertained us with a selection on his cello.
Robinson bought property in the Saltery Bay area in 2004 and has lived there since 2016. He has been a PRISMA board member for seven years. 
Robinson spoke about the economic and cultural benefits of PRISMA to our region with financial spinoffs through wages and suppliers, hotels, retailers and restaurants as visitors flock to the two-week event. An economic multiplier of 2.3 is used to define the financial impact. 
Like other cultural festivals in Canada, PRISMA relies heaving on values unique to this community with its cadre of enthusiastic volunteers.
Arnold mentioned that last year audience numbers were 65 percent of those pre-COVID and he expects them to increase this year. He is looking to breaking through a “glass ceiling to bring more joy” through music to the community. 
“It could only happen here,” Robinson quoted from his annual report that will be presented at the upcoming AGM.PRISMA takes place June 12-24, 2023.
A group of Rotarians helped PRISMA move its office space at Town Centre Mall on February 4. It is just one of the many ways our club supports this major cultural event in qathet region.
A club past president Carol Brown conducted the election of officers for the 20230-24 year during the recent AGM. Her remarks included “In this time of change in our world, we have seen many organizations and clubs falter and disappear. How then does Rotary persevere? I believe that Rotary actually embraces and welcomes change, and our club is comfortable with the process. The 4-Way Test is the glue that holds us together and those four simple tenets construct a safe and moral environment that allows us to embrace Service Above Self.”
In addition to a set of updated bylaws, the election this year of each directorship of areas of service will be shared by two members. This change reflects the shared responsibility, mentorship, succession and collaboration deserved for positive outcomes in our club. 
Service projects – Kelly Keil and Ian Currie; Foundation – Don Logan and Katya Gustafson; Membership – Scott Randolph and Matt Wate; Public Image/Relations – Joyce Carlson, Cathy Korolek; Fundraising- Deborah Jenkins, Monica Peckford; International and Youth – (I) Bente Hansen, Elke Sager, (Y) Lisa Gunn; St. At Arms – Jill Ehgoetz. Executive members are Secretary Sean Dees, Treasurer Frieda Hamoline, Vice-president Kelly Keil, President-Elect Dave Gustafson and President Jan Gisborne. 
Treasurer Frieda present the year-end financial statement as of June 30 for discussion. 
The new set of bylaws were voted on at the December 7 meeting. 
Foundation director Don Logan arranged for a fundraiser for Polio-Plus at Royal Zayka on November 16. Rotarians, spouses, other family members and guests filled the restaurant.
Don said he was touched and humbled by the turnout, a proud to be a Rotarian.
During his presentation Don said that polio is caused by a virus not a bacteria and scientists Jonas Salk created a vaccine in 1954 and Albert Sabin created an oral vaccine in 1961.
At age eight, Don contracted polio and it was “pretty scary.” He spent two months in hospital and was fortunate that it did not affect his legs and cause paralysis as happened to hundreds of thousands of other children. His brother was pulled from school and a quarantine sign was put up on the porch of their house. Their dad had to move into a hotel to conduct his business. When Don was released from hospital, all the neighbours came to see the polio victim but didn’t come to close to him. 
A second Rotarian, Jan Gisborne, also contracted polio when she was a year and a half old but had little lasting effect. Her father drove polio victims in an ambulance to Victoria where they were placed in an iron lung from Nanaimo where she lived, and it’s believed that is why she got the disease. 
Rotary’s fight to eradicate polio started with a single Rotarian in the Philippines, sitting at a meeting asking that his club raise funds to buy vaccines. It became a Rotary International goal in 1985 when some 350,000 children in 125 countries came down with polio every year. Today there are only two countries where wild polio virus is endemic, Pakistan and Afghanistan. 
In Canada between 1949 and 1954 when the population was 15,000,000, 11,000 people were paralysed by polio. 
After she joined Rotary, Jan participated in a National Immunization Day in India in 2004. Thousands of Rotary and community volunteers administered over 200 million doses of vaccine in a day. Someone asked if India would ever be polio-free, and the answer was no. But in 2012 the country was declared polio-free. Some children had been vaccinated up to eight times, but many suffer from chronic diarrhea, so it needs to be repeated. 
Gisborne went on a second NIDs trip in 2008 to Nigeria where the teams travelled to areas where there were no maps and impossible to traverse roads. 
She said there is concern that cases have appeared recently in New York state, the United Kingdom and Israel. “As long as there is polio virus anywhere in the world, it is just a plane ride away from us.”
For Guess Who's Coming to Dinner on November 2. Kelly Belanger and Heidi Jackson were co-hosts for Rotarians and spouses at Edie Rae's Cafe while Joyce and Don Carlson hosted at their Scotia Place home, and Ross and Barb Cooper hosted an eclectic menagerie of Rotarians at their Savary Place residence. The Coopers had such a great time, they forgot to take photos of their guests.
John Berry and his wife Pat began their visit to Powell River on October 26 with a tour of various Rotary projects with President Ross. Following that they met with members of the board of directors where John outlined his approach to his position, stating that he recognizes that clubs are the foundation of Rotary. He also mentioned that our club is performing very well on many levels.
Following the meeting, held in the same room as the dinner at Town Centre Hotel, John participated in several parts of the agenda in addition to giving an address to members and guests. PRISMA founder Arthur Arnold played the Ukrainian national anthem and then everyone sang the Canadian anthem. They also sang Happy Birthday to Pat who said the day was the best birthday she has had in a long while.
John then presented Jan with an additional Paul Harris Fellow in recognition of her continuing contribution to Rotary Foundation. In turn, Jan presented him with a certificate of appreciation for his program speech. Fraser East, accompanied by membership director Scott, was then inducted into our club by John. 
A highlight of the evening was the presentation of a cheque for $9,000 to Susan Cathcart who represented Grace House and Powell River Transition Society by organizers of the Wunderbread Dance and Silent Auction. 
Rachael Sherstad spoke to our club about qathet Remembrance Day for Lost Species, a community-led two-day event November 26 and 27, harnessing and highlighting local talent and knowledge. It is part of remembrance events that are taking place internationally and which were first held in the United Kingdom in 2011.
Rachael is a passionate member of qathet Old Growth and an active community member in Powell River. Rachael and her husband Dane own and operate Paradise Valley Produce, a certified organic farm that feeds the local community through CSA and market sales. Through her land stewardship, Rachael strives to exemplify sustainable and respectful relations to the land and community.
The day of remembrance is a day for activists, artists and nature-lovers to find creative ways to share their grief for extinct species, ecosystems and cultures, and reinvigorate their love for the natural world. This event includes a collaborative live storytelling and aerial performance where Naomi Steinberg’s storytelling and owner of Aerial Edge Keely Sills’ performers combine on a topic with a local focus.
A film screening of Chris Morgan’s and panel conversation will provide a space for the public to recognize and mourn the loss of local animals, eco-systems and cultures, and offer an opportunity to connect deeply with the land and each other. Organizers aim to inspire collective action to prevent further extinction of animals, habitat, and Indigenous cultures and practices in qathet region.
The event is a collaborative project with Tla’Amin Nation, School District 47 and qathet Arts Council. 
Racheal said while there is a lot of eco-anxiety, grief and stress among people today, the event will feature celebration and hope.
More information will be forthcoming in the weeks leading up to the event. 
New bricks at the Viewpoint are being installed by Rotarian Sean Dees and Friend of Rotary Charlie Gatt. A special way to remember loved ones or celebrate occasions.
If you want to purchase one, forms are available at the Peak office or Chamber of Commerce office on Wharf Street.
Wunderbread Dance Party
Aside from the great music, there was a costume contest, 50-50 draw and silent auction at the Wunderbread Dance Party on October 1. 
On behalf of Sasha Randolph, her husband Scott reported to the October 5 regular club meeting that approximately $8,000 will be donated to Grace House/PR Transition Society. 
Costume contest winners were Wayne and Cheryl Borgfjord, best dressed couple, Paul Vasseur, best female and Ted Norman, best male.
Laura Cartlidge took over just over $1,000 as winner of the 50-50.
Our Rotary club, with its People of Action, is very appreciative of the support from the community which allows it to good in our area. 
Rotary members staffed the entrance gates to the Fall Fair, back Sept 24 and 25, after a two-year hiatus. The first fair was held 90 years ago and thousands returned to enjoy it again.
Our club also had an information booth where people were invited to fill in “Imagine what Rotary can do in our community” cards and be eligible to win a $100 gift basket of fall items. We received many entries with wonderful ideas for community service projects that our club will investigate.
 Sunrise Rotary Club had purchased four large tents years ago for Sea Fair bingo. When the club unfortunately had to hand in its charter, those members donated many items to our evening club, including the tents. In turn, we donated them to Powell River Agricultural Institute, and they were erected for the Fall Fair to create a fantastic Kids Zone. Reviews were phenomenal.
Rotary Club of Powell River members recently donated an AED to Powell River Sports and Fitness Society Centre. An automated external defibrillator is used to help those experiencing sudden cardiac arrest. It's a sophisticated, yet easy-to-use, medical device that can analyze the heart's rhythm and, if necessary, deliver an electrical shock, or defibrillation, to help the heart re-establish an effective rhythm.
Accepting the device with appreciation were from left to right Tracy Mazgaj, Susan Young, Chris Becker and Liz Maitland. The centre, run and maintained by volunteers, is set up to allow play with tennis, pickleball and badminton as well as a moderate amount of workout equipment. It is located at 4320 Joyce Avenue.
What fun to have our two Rotary booths at Blackberry Street Party on Friday, August 19, where youngsters could fish for prizes or colour. We bought 400 prizes for the fishpond booth and ran out at 9 pm, a testament of its popularity. Kids and parents loved seeing it again after a two-year pandemic hiatus. 
We were assisted by two members of the former Sunrise club which initiated the popular booth for kids on the street which mainly features music, meet, greet and eat. 
For the colouring contest, a random draw was made for a one-month family pass to Powell River Recreation Complex and individual age prizes.'
PDG Darcy Long presided over the installation of our club’s 2022-23 board of directors at Town Centre Hotel on Wednesday, June 29 with members and guests attending.
Incoming president Ross Cooper commended Katya Gustafson for her No Excuses approach to the past year, adding she was on several other boards, a lawyer, wife and mother in a busy household. 
He noted that Jennifer Jones is the first female president of RI and a Canadian. 
Darcy said she is inspired by Jones’ theme Imagine Rotary and one of her many quotes. “Imagine a world that deserves our best, where we get up each day knowing that we can make a difference.” 
Our club that was formed in 1955 went for 47 years before electing its first female president, and in the past 20 years has had 11 females lead it. Ross added that when RI associates words like equality when describing clubs, our club is living it.
Everything a person does for themselves, ends when that person is finished on this earth, Ross explained. Everything that person does for others, he or she leaves behind a legacy of themselves, and those efforts will continue to help others. People who make the biggest difference in people’s lives are the givers.
Now more than ever we need Leadership of Giving. 
He challenged us to be Warriors of Giving, to be People of Action.
Ross said it all starts with making an assessment of what we, as individuals, can do to make positives outcomes. When we do that, we will find it rare to find a task we cannot achieve.
School District 47 Food Literacy Food Program coordinator Vanessa Sparrow spoke to our club members via Zoom on November 3. She has been with the district since 2019 and has been involved with similar school garden programs in Australia and through UBC. 
School gardens are used as outdoor classrooms and, by consulting with teachers and staff, she developed a version to meeting Powell River’s needs called Landed Learning.
Despite COVID, the program has been able to go ahead in local elementary schools. Vanessa explained that things are going fantastically in following the program’s objective of seed to plate learning. 
Students learn to plant, tend, harvest and prepare fresh food by engaging in hands-on activities both at school and at local farms. They develop an understanding of where food comes from and the relationships between living things — people, plants and pollinators. 
One of our members, Anne, is one of 14 volunteer Garden Friends who work side by side in the garden and kitchen with small groups of students.
During the Q&A session, Vanessa answered a question about the gardens in July and August when schools are out. She said it can be challenging. And she accepted the offer of mulch for the gardens to help over the winter. 
For more information, go to www.sd47foodliteracy.come or Powell River Landed Learning Facebook page. 
Vanessa Sparrow
Darryl Jackson
Darryl Jackson was the first in-person program speaker for a regular weekly meeting at Julie’s Airport Café on October 6. 
When he began, he told his audience he speaks using his hands a lot and had a tough time condensing his personal history in the time allotted. A linear path has never been his path; he has always been a “What’s next?” kind of guy. 
He was born in Nanaimo and grew up in nearby Cedar. In high school he wanted to do everything and was terrified of choosing something he would later regret. His goal was to see what the world had to offer so he ran away with a carnival in his late teens. 
He has had multiple careers including cook, firefighter, fisherman, commercial diver, fish farm worker, entrepreneur who owns an ice cream truck and power engineer to name a few. Each has a lengthy story behind it. He said there was no way to fit all the stories into his presentation so we received the Reader’s Digest version. 
When he arrived in Powell River to start over again, he didn’t know anyone but found people so open and so friendly. His “What’s next?” was gone and this was the first place that actually felt like home. Everything he has always wanted is here. He has two kids, two dogs, two cats, a wonderful wife and the best career of all being a grandfather. 
And he is looking forward to becoming even more involved with his community through Rotary. 
Jan Gisborne, centre, thanks Anna Byrne, left and Cathy Fisher, from Powell River Hospice Society
Cathy Fisher, president of Powell River Hospice Society was accompanied by Anna Byrne, vice-president to present the program at our October 13 meeting. 
Hospice philosophy for palliative care is to support social, emotional and spiritual well-being and does not include heroic efforts to save lives. Death is a normal part of life and not a medical emergency. Hospice volunteers don’t provide medical assistance; they listen and support people in improving their quality of living and dying. 
The society is working with Vancouver Coastal Health to finalize a four-room hospice for Powell River which is greatly needed in this community.
From a high of 80 trained people, the society is now down to 35 due to COVID, however, there is triple the number of people needing support. There are also two part-time staff and that will expand. They have still provided support over the telephone, in gardens and virtually. When someone has a life-limiting condition, all along their journey there will be someone to talk with. Anyone interested in being a hospice volunteer can participate in the training. 
More information about becoming a volunteer, society member or participating in fundraising events can be found at
There was a lively discussion with comments and questions at the conclusion of their presentation.

Kelly Belanger 
Kelly Belanger was born in Bonneville, Alberta, the first of five brothers and one of 30 cousins. 
A family on the move, his changed locales 42 times in three years. For the first year of his life, Kelly lived in a drawer. 
When he was five, his mom said it was time to settle down and they did that in Edson where he started kindergarten. 
At the start of another oil boom, they moved to Fort McMurray with his mom who was then single. 
A Red Seal chef, Kelly has been cooking since he was 12 with his grandmother as his instructor. If he made a mistake, she would whack him with a wooden spoon. She also taught at a culinary school where he eventually attended. She was upset when he said he was going to enroll because she wanted him to hate cooking so she retired the year before he started. Kelly says he know more than a lot of the instructors and pulled off the highest mark in the class. 
Cooking doesn’t pay 
as well as working in the oil patch so eventually he went to work there for seven years, going to night school to become a power engineer.
He decided he wanted to reconnect with his father’s family and moved back to Bonneville where in 1994 he met his future wife. 
Ten years later things became to go awry. Kelly, who is gay, said he came out because he was done with lying to himself. He had been traumatized at the age of 12 when he witnessed his first gay bashing and jumped into the closet. 
The first person he told was his son and then daughter who had hoped their parents would get back together. They came around and are now the best of friends.
He met his future husband, JP, in 2007 and they were together for 13 years and married for eight. 
The couple came to Powell River where Kelly saw that The Old Courthouse Inn was for sale. He loved its Tudor style and fell in love with it the moment he stepped into the building. 
When he found out the price, he two days later he was the owner. The realtor told him it was the fastest sale he had ever done. 
Kelly had redecorated all the rooms and serves breakfast every Tuesday through Saturday from 9-1 in Edie Rae’s Café. If he could find more staff to complement the wonderful employees he has, he would open more often. He’s also looking for housekeeping staff. COVID has been hard but this summer was the best one he has experienced and the inn has been full right through to last week 
Serendipitously, years ago he had bought a pen and ink drawing of the courthouse by Powell River artist Courtney Cressy. It now hangs in his private quarters at the inn.
Kelly said his marriage was great, then got a little rough and then ended.  
He loves Powell River which has so much to offer with the outdoors and many new friends and guests who have also become friends. He has felt so accepted here, unlike a lot of small towns. 
He joined Rotary because he was to give back to this community and feels being a Rotarian is the way to do that. 

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