A competition between father-daughter winemakers, Mark and Robin Holford, at Rocky Creek Winery during the summer saw Mark win by just a few votes. (Katherine Holford Photography)

Business notes: Contest at Cowichan winery draws lots of interest

Thousands vote in father-daughter competition at Rock Creek Winery

Award-winning winemaker Mark Holford was the winner again, by a small margin, of a wine-tasting content with his daughter Robin at Cowichan’s Rocky Creek Winery.

Winery president Linda Holford said in a press release that during the summer and early fall season, the winery gave every customer that came to its tasting room its signature winemaker Mark’s Pinot Gris 2019, as well as the Pinot De-Gris made by his daughter Robin, the winery’s second-generation winemaker.

“Afterwards, our customers voted blindly on which version of Pinot Gris they preferred,” said Linda, who is Mark’s wife and Robin’s mother.

“They loved the unique and rare experience, especially enjoying the reveal who made each wine. In a very close race and thousands of votes, the results are in at 56 per cent [for Mark] versus 44 per cent [for Robin]. Mark also won the second part of the competition, which was based on results of competitions. His Pinot Gris won Gold at the All Canadian Wine Championships.”

But Linda said Robin’s Pinot De-Gris is certain to win the last component of the competition; the first to sell out.

“With only a few cases left of her light elegant style Pinot De-Gris, get yours now before the last ones are gone,” she said.

••••

The annual Lake Cowichan Santa Parade has been cancelled this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the events that typically take place at Saywell Park after the parade.

But the Cowichan Lake District Chamber of Commerce will be offering an Art & Goodies Kit at the Cowichan Lake Visitor/Business Centre to help the community get into the Christmas spirit this year.

“We are able to offer 100 families in the Cowichan Lake area a DIY easel kit, an art canvas, cookies, candy and more,” according to the chamber’s website.

“We believe this will be a safe activity for families to participate in from the comfort of their homes. Families will be able to pick up their kit during the last week of November, while supplies last.”

The chamber also plans to have a prop Santa, instead of a real one due to social-distancing protocols, on display at the visitor/business centre during the last week of November for kids to have their pictures taken.

Masks will be mandatory, except for children three and under, and there will be hand sanitizer at the door.

The event will also require preregistration so organizers can monitor the number of people attending in advance.

“To register, email lcchamber@shaw.ca with your family names and you will be assigned a time slot,” the website said.

“Please bring your own camera as we will not be taking photos.”

••••

Home Instead Senior Care, a leading home-care provider in Canada, has opened a new franchise to better serve seniors residing in the south Island area.

The new office, located in Nanaimo will provide in-home senior care to the under-served markets of Nanaimo, Cedar, Cassidy, Lantzville, Ladysmith, Chemainus, Westholme, Crofton, North Cowichan, Duncan and Cobble Hill.

The new office allows for increased service to meet the region’s growing and urgent demand for resources and assistance 24 hours a day, giving additional options to families of senior loved ones through the COVID-19 pandemic and allowing seniors to remain safely in their homes for as long as possible.

The franchise owner that is now serving the region, Melissa King, is a licensed practical nurse by trade with deep expertise in palliative and senior care.

“Since March of this year, I have seen firsthand how seniors have suffered due to barriers to care and essential treatment,” she said.

“My mission is to provide the best possible care for seniors who choose to stay safely and comfortably at home.”

Services can be arranged for a few hours a week and up to 24 hours a day.

For more information, call 250-739-7777, or visit the company’s website at www.homeinstead.ca.

••••

With many Canadians spending more time online due to social distancing measures of the COVID-19 pandemic, cybercrime is on the rise in Canada.

Even before the pandemic, Canadians lost more than $43 million in 2019 to cyber criminals which is why experts were using Cyber Security Awareness Month in October as a platform to share advice to help with cybercrime prevention, according to a press release from Island Savings, a division of First West Credit Union.

“Just like we’re being proactive in our approach to dealing with COVID-19, we need to take the same approach to our cybersecurity,” said Ryan Smith, manager of cybersecurity at Island Savings who works primarily out of the head office in Duncan.

“We’re strongly encouraging members to take every precaution and understand why they should take simple steps like using two-factor authentication, mobile alerts, and creating complex passwords for banking.”

Two-factor authentication is a process in which a secondary code (sent via text or email) is required, in addition to your online banking password, to log into your account.

Mobile alerts are a feature that notifies people on their mobile devices when there is a change made to their online banking account, such as a new bill payee being added.

“Fraudsters typically target individuals who are vulnerable to cyber-attacks and the pandemic has highlighted that,” said Smith.

“We’re seeing a significant number of fake websites tricking people into providing personal information relating to pandemic support, such as the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit.”

••••

Tourism Vancouver Island and Tourism Cowichan have partnered to assist local accommodation businesses in increasing fall overnight stays for the benefit of the business and the local economy.

When visitors book a two-night stay with a participating hotel, they receive a $75 VISA gift card to spend during their visit to Cowichan.

“Not only does this help create more multi-day stays in Cowichan, it will be easier for those guests to experience more of Cowichan; like restaurants, wineries, cideries, breweries, our incredible downtown shops, and attractions,” according to a press release

Cowichan participants include Cowichan River Lodge, Farm Table Inn, Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham Oyster Bay, Oceanfront Suites at Cowichan Bay, Kiwi Cove Lodge, Best Western Plus Chemainus Inn, and Villa Eyrie.



robert.barron@cowichanvalleycitizen.com

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