Justin Samanski-Langille

Colwood Fire Rescue’s new fire Chief Bryan Erwin is seen in front of the station Friday Jan. 21. (Justin Samanski-Langille/News Staff)

‘I’m really excited:’ New chief takes command of Colwood Fire Rescue

Bryan Erwin takes on the role after 17 years with the department

Colwood Fire Rescue’s new fire Chief Bryan Erwin is seen in front of the station Friday Jan. 21. (Justin Samanski-Langille/News Staff)
Laura McIntyre and her three kids are once again facing homelessness after their recently crowdfunded new trailer suffered a fire, and she contracted COVID-19. (Photo Courtesy of Laura McIntyre) (Photo Courtesy of Laura McIntyre)

Single Langford mom of three facing homelessness once again after trailer fire

Laura McIntyre also tested positive for COVID the day before the fire

Laura McIntyre and her three kids are once again facing homelessness after their recently crowdfunded new trailer suffered a fire, and she contracted COVID-19. (Photo Courtesy of Laura McIntyre) (Photo Courtesy of Laura McIntyre)
ElderDog Victoria volunteer Linda Harris takes Lilly for regular walks for her senior owner as part of the non-profit’s services in Greater Victoria. (Photo Courtesy of Linda Harris)

Seniors, do you need help caring for your four-legged friend?

ElderDog is now looking to expand its volunteer and client lists in the Sooke area

ElderDog Victoria volunteer Linda Harris takes Lilly for regular walks for her senior owner as part of the non-profit’s services in Greater Victoria. (Photo Courtesy of Linda Harris)
Renee Monson receives her COVID-19 booster shot from nurse Scott Renmer during a vaccination clinic on Thursday at SEAPARC Leisure Complex in Sooke. (Justin Samanski-Langille - Sooke News Mirror)

Sooke booster clinic jabbing 200 arms a day

COVID vaccination clinic has been running smoothly in its first week

Renee Monson receives her COVID-19 booster shot from nurse Scott Renmer during a vaccination clinic on Thursday at SEAPARC Leisure Complex in Sooke. (Justin Samanski-Langille - Sooke News Mirror)
Sooke alternative rock band Shale has released its first single – To The Ground – which saw more than 4,000 streams in five days. (Contributed - Serena Haley Photography)

‘Pretty unbelievable’ – Sooke rockers Shale breaking out with debut single

To The Ground has been streamed more than 4,000 times in five days

Sooke alternative rock band Shale has released its first single – To The Ground – which saw more than 4,000 streams in five days. (Contributed - Serena Haley Photography)
Sooke School District said registration numbers were strong once again for nature and French immersion kindergarten in the 2022-2023 school year, and officials are expecting the same for regular kindergarten registration when it opens on Jan. 24. (File - Black Press Media)

Sooke School District sees steady numbers for kindergarten registration

Lack of qualified teachers limiting French immersion curriculum

Sooke School District said registration numbers were strong once again for nature and French immersion kindergarten in the 2022-2023 school year, and officials are expecting the same for regular kindergarten registration when it opens on Jan. 24. (File - Black Press Media)
Tanelle Bolt is raising concerns over snow clearing on sidewalks in Langford after a recent dump of snow left her struggling to navigate city sidewalks, such as this one along Jacklin Road on the evening of Jan. 7. (Photo courtesy of Tanelle Bolt)

VIDEO: Accessibility concerns raised over sidewalk snow clearing in Langford

Local wheelchair user said she has been unable to get around in aftermath of a snowstorm

Tanelle Bolt is raising concerns over snow clearing on sidewalks in Langford after a recent dump of snow left her struggling to navigate city sidewalks, such as this one along Jacklin Road on the evening of Jan. 7. (Photo courtesy of Tanelle Bolt)
Colwood council approved 18 community grants-in-aid for 2022 on Monday, totalling $32,900 of the budgeted $45,100. (Photo courtesy of City of Colwood)

Colwood approves nearly $33,000 in grants to community groups for 2022

18 of 20 applications get green light, $12,200 remains in budget for out-of-cycle requests

Colwood council approved 18 community grants-in-aid for 2022 on Monday, totalling $32,900 of the budgeted $45,100. (Photo courtesy of City of Colwood)
Johnny Vallis worked with the late Ronnie Spector during an 80-show house tour of the Legends of Rock and Roll in 1993. He said her loss on Jan. 12 is significant both for him personally, and for the music industry as a whole. (Photo courtesy of Johnny Vallis)

’Quite something:’ Langford singer reflects on performing with late rock legend Ronnie Spector

Johnny Vallis worked on 80 shows with Rock & Roll Hall of Fame member, who died Jan. 12

Johnny Vallis worked with the late Ronnie Spector during an 80-show house tour of the Legends of Rock and Roll in 1993. He said her loss on Jan. 12 is significant both for him personally, and for the music industry as a whole. (Photo courtesy of Johnny Vallis)
Ava-Marie Jaeger, 11, finished first all-around in tryouts for the Vancouver Island Zone 6 artistic gymnastics team and will compete in the BC Winter Games in Vernon in February. (Photo courtesy Sheila Jaeger)

VIDEO: 11-year-old Langford gymnast leads Island team into the 2022 BC Winter Games

Ava-Marie Jaeger finished first all-around in Vancouver Island Zone 6 tryouts

Ava-Marie Jaeger, 11, finished first all-around in tryouts for the Vancouver Island Zone 6 artistic gymnastics team and will compete in the BC Winter Games in Vernon in February. (Photo courtesy Sheila Jaeger)
Gym manager Dirk Popen (left), business partner Melissa Baxandall and owner Craig Vasconcelos at the currently closed Eagle Creek Athletic Club in View Royal. The club’s status as a new business renders it ineligible for federal business pandemic supports. (Photo courtesy of Craig Vasconcelos)

West Shore business owners worry about future in wake of COVID-driven closures

Amount, eligibility for pandemic biz aid falls short, West Shore health club operators say

Gym manager Dirk Popen (left), business partner Melissa Baxandall and owner Craig Vasconcelos at the currently closed Eagle Creek Athletic Club in View Royal. The club’s status as a new business renders it ineligible for federal business pandemic supports. (Photo courtesy of Craig Vasconcelos)
Dr. Chris Willott of the Herzberg Astronomy and Astrophysics Research Centre in Saanich served as co-lead for Canada’s contribution to the James Webb Space Telescope. (Photo Courtesy of Chris Willott)

Space telescope to explore earliest galaxies thanks to work of Greater Victoria scientists

Team at Herzberg research centre helped design the James Webb Space Telescope

Dr. Chris Willott of the Herzberg Astronomy and Astrophysics Research Centre in Saanich served as co-lead for Canada’s contribution to the James Webb Space Telescope. (Photo Courtesy of Chris Willott)
Peninsula Panthers forward Logan Speirs and owner Pete Zubersky console Don Colegrave during a memorial ceremony for Grant Gilbertson Friday night at the Panorama Recreation Centre. (Justin Samanski-Langille/News Staff)

‘Our loyal friend’: Grant Gilbertson remembered at Peninsula Panthers pre-game ceremony

Gilbertson, a Panthers forward, died in a car crash just days earlier

Peninsula Panthers forward Logan Speirs and owner Pete Zubersky console Don Colegrave during a memorial ceremony for Grant Gilbertson Friday night at the Panorama Recreation Centre. (Justin Samanski-Langille/News Staff)
The City of Colwood is now able to track traffic moving through eight intersections. (Screenshot courtesy of City of Colwood)

Colwood launches new traffic dashboard

While helping motorists plan their routes, the data will guide city on infrastructure planning

The City of Colwood is now able to track traffic moving through eight intersections. (Screenshot courtesy of City of Colwood)
Angela Babcock helped this injured bald eagle receive medical attention after managing to lure it into her shed. The bird was found later to have serious injuries, and was euthanized at the Wild Animal Rehabilitation Centre. (Angela Babcock/Facebook)

Sooke residents thanked for role in bald eagle rescue

Bird could not be saved, but staying with eagle until help arrived the right thing to do: Wild ARC

Angela Babcock helped this injured bald eagle receive medical attention after managing to lure it into her shed. The bird was found later to have serious injuries, and was euthanized at the Wild Animal Rehabilitation Centre. (Angela Babcock/Facebook)
Colwood Fire Rescue acting fire Chief Greg Chow stands next to a fire truck used by the department from 1957 to 1977, now restored and displayed in the department’s museum. 2021 marked the department’s 75th anniversary. (Justin Samanski-Langille/News Staff)

‘A department to be proud of’: Colwood Fire Rescue marks 75 years serving community

Acting fire Chief Greg Chow takes Black Press through the department’s history

Colwood Fire Rescue acting fire Chief Greg Chow stands next to a fire truck used by the department from 1957 to 1977, now restored and displayed in the department’s museum. 2021 marked the department’s 75th anniversary. (Justin Samanski-Langille/News Staff)
Plows on the West Shore are working overtime as more snow falls Dec. 30. (Justin Samanski-Langille/News Staff)

West Shore crews work overtime to keep on top of Jack Frost

Langford and Colwood snow removal operations smooth so far this season

Plows on the West Shore are working overtime as more snow falls Dec. 30. (Justin Samanski-Langille/News Staff)
Christopher Kelsall, right, addresses a polar bear swim crowd during a previous event. This year’s Smart Dolphins IT Solutions New Year’s Day Polar Bear Swim has been cancelled due to rising COVID-19 cases, Kelsall said Wednesday. (Photo Courtesy of Athletics Illustrated/Facebook)

Esquimalt Lagoon polar bear swim cancelled for second year in a row

The Smart Dolphins IT Solutions New Year’s Day Polar Bear Swim was scheduled for Saturday

Christopher Kelsall, right, addresses a polar bear swim crowd during a previous event. This year’s Smart Dolphins IT Solutions New Year’s Day Polar Bear Swim has been cancelled due to rising COVID-19 cases, Kelsall said Wednesday. (Photo Courtesy of Athletics Illustrated/Facebook)
Langford Emergency Social Services co-founder Beverly Wilson, left, receives recognition from Langford Fire Rescue Chief Chris Aubrey during a celebration of the volunteer organzation’s 25th anniversary. (Photo Courtesy of Langford ESS)

25-year emergency social services volunteer, co-founder celebrated by Langford

ESS group sprang from Beverley Wilson’s questions about emergency preparedness

Langford Emergency Social Services co-founder Beverly Wilson, left, receives recognition from Langford Fire Rescue Chief Chris Aubrey during a celebration of the volunteer organzation’s 25th anniversary. (Photo Courtesy of Langford ESS)
The Vancouver Island Safe Speed Association has developed an early concept for a new motorsports park that includes most of the elements of the current Westshore Speedway, due to close after the 2022 season. (Photo courtesy of VISSA)

Non-profit developing plan for new motorsports park on West Shore

Group working in advance of impending closure of Westshore Speedway after 2022 season

The Vancouver Island Safe Speed Association has developed an early concept for a new motorsports park that includes most of the elements of the current Westshore Speedway, due to close after the 2022 season. (Photo courtesy of VISSA)