Beaver Valley Probus Club

Grapevine February 2024

February 05, 2024 12:11 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

President's Message
Ilene Rushefsky Charland

Welcome to our new members! At last count, we had 70 new members join the club. Thanks to our social convener, Don, and our many activity leaders, there is lots of excitement at our PROBUS club recently. We are very sure you will enjoy the plethora of activities and events that are offered and we encourage you to get involved, try new activities, and make new friends. Whether your interests lie in outdoor pursuits, indoor games or dining, there is something for everyone.

The management committee is again planning to host our new members at a "meet and greet" prior to the February general meeting. At the general meeting in February, we will hear from Randy Bird, who will excite us with his love of the underwater world.

Our Annual General Meeting online is on March 26, where we will share the voting results for our new executive slate and proposed by-law changes. This is followed by an in-person Activity Fair in the afternoon, where you will have a chance to meet some of the activity group leaders, get more information and ask questions. All of this is posted on our website, so check it out!

Pam Weaver & Kathy Mercer

On February 1, 2024 we mark the start of a new membership year. We are pleased to report that our enrollment remains at capacity of 600. We look forward to having over 70 of our newest members join the rest of us at our February Membership meeting. If you have any questions, please contact us at

Volunteers Needed
Martin Buscher, Past President

Our wonderful volunteers on our management committee are looking for an infusion of energy and talent! While they would like to keep all the fun to themselves, they are willing to share it with a few members ready to get to work. In particular, we are looking for a Vice President next year! If you might be interested, please contact me, or any of the management committee to learn more about the role!

January Membership Meeting Notes

We had a very interesting talk about Managing Anxiety given by our very own Todd Kaufman at our January 23 membership meeting. As promised, here are some notes from Todd's presentation. You can also view the photo album from the January meeting!

February Meeting - Tuesday, Feb 27 @ 1:00 PM

Please register if you plan to attend this meeting—so that we have enough chairs and coffee for everyone!

Date: Tuesday, February 27, 2024
Doors open: 1:00 PM
Meeting begins: 1:30 PM

Speaker: Randy Bird
Title: Exploring the Underwater World—a Journey of Colour And Mystery!

Underwater photography is a passion and challenge that inspires Randy's quest for the perfect underwater pictures.  In this presentation Randy will share his favourite photos, of the amazing, and unique creatures he has encountered below the surface.

Randy has been a certified scuba diver since 1984. He attained the level of Instructor-Trainer with SSI (Scuba Schools International), and has received the SSI Platinum Pro Instructor Award. Sharing his love for diving he taught in schools in Toronto and Oakville introducing hundreds of people to scuba diving. He has over 3800 dives to date which equates to about 4000 hours underwater. Randy has had the opportunity to dive the Great Lakes in Canada and the USA, the St. Lawrence, the Caribbean, and most the of the oceans of the world (with the exception of the Arctic).

50/50 Draw: Dianne P. and Rod M. shared in the $308.00 pot at our January 23 monthly speaker meeting. Our 50/50 tickets are on sale at the beginning of each monthly meeting and during the first break. See Elaine and Hank Bouwman at the table at the back of the room!

Book Exchange:
The Book Exchange will be set up at the back of the room starting at 1 PM. Books should have a copyright from 2014 or later. Bring a Book, Take a Book. We ask that you exchange no more than 3 books at a time. Please contact Nancy Hart with any questions!

Social Events 
Don Collins-Williams - Social Convenor

A fun time was had by all at the Valley Ridge Farm Sleigh Ride on January 24—see the photo album—snow enough for everyone! 

February 7 - Pilkington Glass Factory Tour: The Pilkington factory tour on February 7 was vastly oversubscribed. We are hoping to be able to get more tours from them, and those on the wait list will be given priority. We have been told that the earliest another tour may take place is in April.

February 13 - Any Dream Will Do: The music of Andrew Lloyd Webber is sold out with 71 members registered. But again, if you would still be interested in attending, please join the waitlist, as we often get a few late cancellations.

June 12 - King's Wharf Theatre Event: The Rock of Ages event in Penetanguishene is now sold out! Please Join Waitlist as cancellations do happen! For questions contact Vicki Kellar.

Watch the Grapevine and your email for notification of additional events, and as always, any suggestions for other potential outings are welcome!

Georgian PROBUS Travel Group
Gloria Thompson

For PROBUS members, family and friends who would like to travel with local people and create new friendships—GPTG, your travel group—is proceeding with the following 2 trips:

Circumnavigation of Newfoundland:  June 16 - 27, 2024. For those who love learning, small ship travel, and unique experiences. We still have space with no single supplement and a group discount. Please contact Brenda Chapman at Marlin Travel 705-444-1161 with any questions.

Norway Coastal Voyage: September 17 - 27, 2024. From Bergen to Trondheim. We also still have group pricing and space. Most of the members booked on this trip are travelling early, to experience the fabulous train program from Oslo to Bergen...then taking the train back from Trondheim to Oslo. For more information please contact Gloria at 705-429-9455.

Activity Groups Update

Many of our Activity Group sign-ups are still open! Sign-up will close again on March 5, to prepare for the new season sign-ups. Remember you will need to sign-up on March 26 for your Activity Groups for the upcoming season, even if you signed up last year, or this year before March 5. 

You can see what the different Activity Groups are all about at our in-person Activity Fair on March 26 at the Beaver Valley Community Centre.

There is a step-by-step video on "how to sign-up" for Activity Groups. Click on the red arrow to view!

If need any help with passwords or sign-up, please contact our web team on our email address:


Casual Dining with Friends
Sallie Kedwell

In January our new experiment of choosing either a lunch or a dinner event (both on the same day) was easily organized and by all reports went well. We’ll continue that format for February just in case the winter driving ever does become an issue! The invitations will be sent out on February 5 for those who have signed up for the Casual Dining With Friends Activity Group.

Computer GroupComputer Group
Martin Buscher

Didn't you get our email? A simple question that is often very difficult to answer. In this session, we're going to delve down a little bit into the world of email infrastructure and the technologies used to identify and discard unwanted messages. Sadly, this is going to be the last session of the Activity Group, unless someone is willing to step forward to lead it! After 5 years, Martin has run out of interesting topics to share.

Cross Country Skiing
Glen Downey

This is a new activity group this year! We had our first outing on January 25 and plan to go out again on February 15 at the Kolapore South Ski Trail, as conditions permit. Click on the Cross Country Activity page for more information. Sign-up now to get notified when outings are planned!

French Club 
Caroline Bacher

The French Club meets once a month in members’ homes. The host/hostess choose a topic of conversation so that participants can prepare their dialogue ahead of time. So far we have had three meetings with up to 8 participants. Everyone seems to be enjoying the chance to improve their spoken French!

Dining Around Town
Hank Bouwman

Dining around TownInvitations for our Wednesday February 21 Luncheon at Tesoro Restaurant in Collingwood were sent out on February 1 to those members who have signed up for Dining Around Town. It’s not too late to join us—just go to the Dining Around Town activity page and click on the Activity Group Sign-up button.

The Amici Restaurant in Meaford posted to their Facebook page about our January 17 luncheon there:

“A big thank you to the Beaver Valley Probus Club! We had the pleasure of hosting 31 wonderful guests today for a private lunch. Special gratitude to Hank Bouwman for coordinating the event. Our menu featured delightful choices like Chicken Parm Pasta, Hot Beef Dinner, Smoked Higginson Farm Burger, and, of course, our AMICI House Salad. To all the members who joined us today, it was truly our pleasure to have you. We enjoyed meeting many of you for the first time and look forward to welcoming you back for another delicious meal. Much appreciated, The AMICI Team.”

Future Dining Dates:
  • Wednesday, February 21 Luncheon – Tesoro Restaurant, Collingwood
  • Wednesday, March 20, Luncheon – Sheardown’s Wine Bar, Meaford 
  • Monday, April 15, Luncheon – Mill Restaurant, Thornbury 
  • Wednesday, April 17, Luncheon – Mill Restaurant, Thornbury 
  • Wednesday, April 24, Luncheon – Mill Restaurant, Thornbury 
  • Monday, June 17, Family Style Dinner – Marilynne Restaurant, Markdale
  • Friday, August 16, Annual Pizza Party – Justin’s Oven, Kimberley 
  • Wednesday, September 18, Buffet Dinner – The Falls Inn, Walters Falls
  • Wednesday, October 16, Dinner –The Huron Club, Collingwood

Bill McMurray

Our next luncheon will be on Wednesday, February 13. The invitation email with all the details will be sent out this Tuesday for those who have signed up for the R.O.M.E.O Activity Group.

Euchre 1
Elaine & Hank Bouwman

Our next Euchre 1 tournament will be on Tuesday February 13 at 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm at The Far Hills Clubhouse in Thornbury. Our January 9 tournament was enjoyed by 26 members (6 tables) with Ken K. taking home bragging rights after 7 games.

Intermediate Euchre
Elaine & Hank Bouwman

We have reserved The Far Hills Clubhouse in Thornbury for the 2nd Tuesday of each month from 1 – 4 pm. Our next Intermediate Euchre tournament will be on Tuesday February 13. Lou F. claimed top spot for the afternoon on January 9. 

Nancy Dixon

Thursday, February 1 turned out to be one of the best Rambles to date. With the addition of more new members than my regular Ramblers totalling 25, l was struck by how enthusiastic everyone was. One wonderful gentlemen even asked about my Walking Soccer group. Before our soccer season though, I plan a few new walks, mixed in with some of my more usual Rambles, including our Collingwood trail walk along the shore ending at the Collingwood Marine Museum to find out about the history of the area. Check out the Ramblers Activity Page to register for the Ramblers Activity Group if you have not already done so, in order to receive our invites for the walks.

Ilene Rushefsky Charland

The snowshoeing group has also resumed this season. We plan to alternate weeks with the Cross Country Skiing group. Click on the Snowshoeing Activity page for more details. Sign-up now to get notified when the sessions are scheduled!

Humour Corner - Old Interesting Facts
Shared by Hank Bouwman 

  • A SHOT OF WHISKEY - In the old west a .45 cartridge for a six-gun cost 12 cents, so did a glass of whiskey. If a cowhand was low on cash, he would often give the bartender a cartridge in exchange for a drink. This became known as a "shot" of whiskey.
  • IRON CLAD CONTRACT - This came about from the ironclad ships of the Civil War. It meant something so strong it could not be broken.
  • COBWEB - The Old English word for “spider" was "cob".
  • SHIP STATE ROOMS - Travelling by steamboat was considered the height of comfort. Passenger cabins on the boats were not numbered. Instead they were named after states. To this day cabins on ships are called staterooms.
  • OVER A BARREL - In the days before CPR, a drowning victim would be placed face down over a barrel and the barrel would be rolled back and forth in an effort to empty the lungs of water. It was rarely effective. If you are over a barrel, you are in deep trouble.
  • BARGE IN - Heavy freight was moved along the Mississippi in large barges pushed by steamboats. These were hard to control and would sometimes swing into piers or other boats. People would say they "barged in".

The Master Gardener’s Corner
John Hethrington, Master Gardener Emeritus
Past President, Master Gardeners of Ontario

Click on the photo to see what you need to be doing in your garden in February!

Support Group
Lucie Desjardins, Maureen Lalonde, Mary Ann Collins-Williams

Do you know of a BVPC member who is having a difficult time (health issue, accident, hospitalization, loss of partner, etc.) and would benefit from receiving a card or a call from our team? If so, please let us know. We will be happy to follow up and/or get in touch with them. 

The Last Word
Shared by  Nancy Dixon

A smile is the best face cream.
Nessebar, Bulgarian Philosopher 2013

Activity Groups: Participate - Volunteer - Have Fun!

Convenor: Volunteer needed!

Please be advised that all events and activities of the Beaver Valley PROBUS Club are organized for the benefit and enjoyment of its Members. Individuals who participate do so at their own risk and are responsible for their own safety.

All rights reserved.

Beaver Valley PROBUS Club

Box 144, Thornbury, ON N0H 2P0

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