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Business Notes: Malahat SkyWalk has new general manager

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Travis Berthiaume, owner of Duncan’s Dairy Queen located at 328 Trans-Canada Highway, is being recognized as DQ’s Miracle Maker Award recipient for 2023.

Malahat SkyWalk has appointed Nathan Bird as its new general manager.

As a highly recognized industry leader, Bird brings decades of tourism experience and a proven track record for success.

In his new role, he will be responsible for the company’s overall strategic direction and the seamless operations of its day-to-day business.

Bird will also play a vital part in strengthening the company’s position as a leading B.C. attraction.

“I’m excited for this new opportunity and to help guide the company into its next phase of growth,” Bird said.

“With the attraction entering its fourth year of operations, we’re in a unique position to further build and elevate the Malahat SkyWalk experience and showcase all that it has to offer for locals and visitors across the globe.”

Prior to joining Malahat SkyWalk, Bird was the general manager of Victoria-based Eagle Wing Tours.

Under his leadership, the company was honoured with multiple travel industry awards for sustainable tourism.

Bird has also held a variety of roles in guest services, sales, and senior management at premier Victoria hotel and resort properties, including the iconic Fairmont Empress.

“A well-rounded leader, he brings a wealth of knowledge and experience within B.C.’s tourism industry,” Malahat SkyWalk said in a statement.

“Bird’s passion for connecting people with nature, forward-thinking approach, and ongoing commitment to exceptional guest services will be instrumental in enhancing the Malahat SkyWalk experience and solidifying it as a must-see, must-do attraction on Vancouver Island.”

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Travis Berthiaume, owner of Duncan’s Dairy Queen located at 328 Trans-Canada Highway, is being recognized as DQ’s Miracle Maker Award recipient for 2023.

Each year, the Miracle Maker Award is presented to a Canadian franchisee and/or operator who has gone above and beyond in their fundraising efforts to support their local Children’s Miracle Network hospital.

Over the years, Berthiaume has impressively raised more than $147,000 in support of the BC Children’s Hospital Foundation through Miracle Treat Day and other fundraising activities year-round.

He’s raised more than $23,000 in 2023 alone, which is not an easy feat for the population of the Cowichan Valley

“Travis has volunteered to be a CMN Ambassador since the program was initiated, motivating and challenging everyone around him to increase their support towards this important cause,” Dairy Queen said in a press release.

“He takes Miracle Treat Day to the next level by inviting radio broadcasts to report live from his DQ location and engages with local politicians to help draw a bigger crowd. Thanks to his hard work and leadership, many community members come year after year to support Miracle Treat Day.”

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With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, Chef Dan Bain and his team at Mill Bay’s Unsworth Vineyards are at it again in the kitchen curating a four-course Valentine’s Dinner, along with optional wine pairings curated by sommelier Chris Turyk.

The cost of the meal is $90 per person plus tax and gratuity, and the optional wine pairings $35 per person.

As well, in Unsworth’s Tasting Room, Karen and her team have a Valentine’s inspired experience from Feb.7-14, which features two tasting flights, charcuterie for two, a box of Folklore Chocolates, and a small bouquet of flowers.

The cost is $65 per couple, plus tax.

For more information, call 250.929.2292 (ext. 2), or email info@unsworthvineyards.com.

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February is the month of love, and the Duncan Cowichan Chamber of Commerce is excited to share some with its valued members.

The Chamber Guys are gearing up for #instadropin visits, bringing promotional love directly to your doorstep.

They especially want to hear from those the chamber haven’t seen in a while or haven’t had the chance to visit yet.

“Your business is the heart of our community, and we’re eager to give you the spotlight you deserve,” the chamber said.

“If you’ve felt a little out of the loop, now’s your chance to reconnect. Let us know you’re ready for a visit and we’ll make it happen. Think of it as our way of sending a Valentine to each and every member. It’s our time to celebrate the relationships that make our community thrive. Reach out and be part of this special connection. We’re looking forward to sharing some chamber love with you.”

To set up a visit, email admin@duncancc.bc.ca.

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David Miller, board chair of BC Infrastructure Benefits, recently shared updates with the Cowichan Valley Regional District and local municipalities about the Cowichan District Hospital Replacement Project (CDHRP).

BCIB, a key player in some of B.C.’s largest infrastructure projects, has been a significant employer in the Cowichan Valley, especially through the CDHRP.

As part of the Nuts’a’maat Alliance, BCIB is committed to providing skilled trade careers to local residents, boosting the community’s economy.

Notably, 45 per cent of all CDHRP workers hired are from the Cowichan Valley, with a total of 124 local workers employed since 2019.

BCIB’s focus extends beyond employment; they’re actively creating inclusive and respectful job sites, addressing worker retention and promoting diversity.

This approach has led to higher-than-average employment of Indigenous and female workers in the region.

For those interested in joining the skilled trades or learning about BCIB’s impact, visit their website at https://bcib.ca/skilled-workers/trades-training/, or reach out to Greg Johnson at gjohnson@bcib.ca for more information.

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Members of the Parksville Qualicum 4H Beef Club arrive with a couple of goats at the Islands Agriculture Show, which was held Feb. 2-3 at Cowichan Exhibition Park. (Robert Barron/Citizen)


Robert Barron

About the Author: Robert Barron

Since 2016, I've had had the pleasure of working with our dedicated staff and community in the Cowichan Valley.
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