Bill Stenson’s new book, ‘Half Brothers and Other Stories’, will soon hit the shelves. (Book cover)

Bill Stenson’s new book, ‘Half Brothers and Other Stories’, will soon hit the shelves. (Book cover)

A&E column: Terry Fox Run Sept. 19; book about brothers; musicians in Honeymoon Bay

A look at what’s coming up in arts and culture in the Cowichan Valley

Have you ever thought about following in the footsteps of one of Canada’s greatest icons, and hit the street or the trail for the Terry Fox Run?

It’s easier than ever this year, as you can walk or run in your own time, in your own community.

The 41st annual Terry Fox Run is set for Sunday, Sept. 19. Because of rising COVID-19 cases, organizers have decided not to hold a formal event this year, but you can still take part.

“Disappointing for sure but pandemic or not the legacy run will always go on for us,” said Todd Frykas in a letter to the Citizen about the upcoming event. “The importance of remembering Terry’s dream in finding a cure for cancer by continuing the global research funded by our donations small and large is what really matters.”

Registration to take part can be done on the website: https://terryfox.org

The organization has also decided to celebrate Fox’s heritage this year.

“This year’s T-shirt is special as the Fox family came together with Métis Nation B.C. to create the design,” Frykas said. “This celebrates Terry’s heritage traced back to his maternal grandmother Mary Ann Gladue. The words ‘To fund Cancer research’ are printed in English, French, and the Métis traditional language of Michif are written on the front. ‘Try like Terry’ is written on the back surrounded by a beadwork border and the Métis infinite symbol.”

Frykas also said that there will be a few T-shirts and posters for sale if you drop by McAdam Park in Duncan on Sept. 19 between 10 a.m. and 12 p.m.

“Please find the time on Sept. 19 to walk, run, bike as one, or better yet with your family, as we teach our children about this Canadian hero and the magnitude of what he was able to accomplish,” Frykas said.

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A widely acclaimed Cowichan Valley author has a new book coming out.

Bill Stenson’s new fiction book Half Brothers and Other Stories will soon hit the shelves, with stories that publisher Mona Fertig (Mother Tongue Publishing), describes in a press release as stories that “shimmer in summer heat under the gaze of a two-humped mountain and belong to the Cowichan Valley.”

So what are the stories about?

Half Brothers is a masterly and unsentimental novella of the lives of two brothers left unchanneled by parental review. One brother is tough and likes to fight, the other does not. ​One is the father’s favourite and the other hides when he can. But in an extraordinary reversal of roles, and as the years pass, readers ultimately learn which one has the true grit.

“In the four short stories; ‘Ball and Chain’, ‘Bon’, ‘Dick and Jane’ and ‘Super Reader’, Stenson uses wry wit to capture the voices of the young and old of small-town Duncan and area, in edgy juxtapositions. This is Canadian Literature at its best — calling forth a country that already exists. Flying beneath the radar, Stenson is one of our best fictionists.”

Stenson has not flown completely under the radar, however.

He won the Great BC Novel contest with his work Ordinary Strangers, and other published works include Translating Women, Svodboda and Hanne and Her Brother. He has also been a finalist for the Prism International Fiction Contest and the Prairie Fire Short Fiction Contest.

Stenson grew up in Cowichan and currently lives in the Valley with his wife Susan who is a poet.

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Did you know when you attend the Open Air Market at Honeymoon Bay on Saturdays, you’re not just getting fine local goods, but also a bit of a concert, too?

Local musicians Richie Valley and Brian Richardson play “just for fun” weekly at the market, which runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The duo plays three sets every Saturday, and features popular jazz, blues, and even some originals.

“There is no charge for the easy going live music, although tips are appreciated,” according to a press release issued by the duo. “The market is a good option for a lazy Saturday.”

Richardson has just released his “Jazz-O-Matic” EP with five tracks and will have copies available at the market in CD and flash drive format. Valley is showcasing live renditions of ‘In Search For the Lost Harmonic’ and ‘Butterfly Sunflower’, the title track from his forthcoming LP.

The weekly market remains open Saturdays through the Labour Day long weekend

—With files from Sarah Simpson/Citizen

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