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Monday, August 22, 2016

Charges pending after raid on Lutsel K'e area island

Charges are pending against two Yellowknife residents and a resident of Lutsel K'e after RCMP seized marijuana and a large quantity of alcohol from an island just north of Lutsel K'e. According to a news release, police began an investigation into illegal alcohol in the community on Aug 17 and located several individuals camping on the island. The two suspects from Yellowknife are facing criminal charges while the Lutsel K'e resident will be charged under the NWT Liquor Act. No names have been released.

- John McFadden

Research project studies climate change impact on roads

The second phase of a project looking at climate change impacts on the territory's roads will examine parts of the newly constructed Inuvik-Tuktoyaktuk Highway, according to a press release from the federal and territorial governments.

The Northwest Territories Transportation Monitoring Program is researching how climate change is impacting permafrost transportation infrastructure, including roads, culverts and bridges.

The second phase of the project is estimated to cost $747,600.

- Kassina Ryder

Residents asked to report abandoned oil wells

Northwest Territories residents and visitors are being asked to report any abandoned wells in the territory through a new program called Well Watch, a press release from the territorial Office of the Regulator of Oil and Gas Operations (OROGO) stated.

"The program recognizes that the people who use the land are in the best place to notice changes to the land. Information from community members will help OROGO to target its inspection activities towards well sites of concern in areas used by residents of the Northwest Territories," the release stated. "It will also serve to validate the information that OROGO has on file about abandoned wells in its jurisdiction."

- Kassina Ryder

Cultural Arbour opens

Fort Providence's Cultural Arbour is now complete,

The facility has seating for 600 people and is intended to be a community gathering lace.

The federal Gas Tax Fund funded the project, which cost $451,000.

- Kassina Ryder

Gameti combines Gameti Day and Tlicho Day

Gameti/Rae Lakes

Gameti combined its annual Gameti Day and Tlicho Day celebrations to create one big party on Aug. 6, said recreation assistant Becky Chocolate.

Gameti Day actually takes place on Aug. 9 and Tlicho Day is observed on Aug. 4. Both the hamlet and the Tlicho Government (TG) hosted events throughout the day, including games and a barbecue.

The recreation department organized games such as Chubby Bunny, where participants compete to see who can fit the most marshmallows in their mouths, as well as envelope drops where residents raced for cash prizes tossed into the crowd.

The TG held canoe races for women and men's teams, as well as egg toss games and other events, Chocolate said.

"It was a good turnout," she said.

- Kassina Ryder

Tulita youth spend day at Windy Island

Tulita/Fort Norman

A trip to Windy Island near Tulita on Aug. 14 was a highlight of the community's summer activities, said recreation co-ordinator Archie Erigaktuk.

Twelve youth and five adults travelled to the island where they spent the day swimming, doing scavenger hunts and enjoying a barbecue together.

The weather was perfect for the trip, Erigaktuk said.

"It was plus 28 and the winds were below nine kilometres an hour," he said. "It was a good day to take advantage of."

The group had planned to spend about an hour and a half at the island but ended up staying much longer, Erigaktuk added.

"We were out there for three and a half hours," he said. "They just loved it out there."

- Kassina Ryder

$25,000 men's handgames tournament on the way

Acho Dene Koe/Fort Liard

The second annual fall gathering and handgames tournament was set to sweep Fort Liard from Aug. 19 and running until Aug. 21.

The $25,000 men's handgames tournament was to be a double knock-out format, with eight players per team plus one optional sub.

The handgames tournament was for ages 12 and up.

All events were held at the arbour, and the gathering to include a traditional food camp and cultural workshops.

An evening drum dance was expected for Aug. 19.

Aug. 20 was to be a flea market and community supper.

- April Hudson

Slo-pitch takes the stage

Deh Gah Got'ie Koe/Fort Providence

The Big River Mixed Slo-Pitch Tournament was all set to move forward from Aug. 19 to 21.

Registration for the tournament closed Aug. 17. Teams were to have six men and four women.

Prizes were set for first, second and third place.

There was also to be a home run derby.

- April Hudson

Youth camp for Kakisa

Ka'a'gee Tu/Kakisa

Partnering with Dehcho First Nations, Kakisa will be running a youth ecology camp from Aug. 22 to 26 through the Dehcho K'ehodi stewardship program.

The camp, for ages 12 and up, is set to take place at Sucker Creek and will include fire ecology, lessons in water monitoring and a paddle safety course, as well as land-based skills taught by land-users and elders.

- April Hudson

Behchoko starts cooking classes

Behchoko/Rae Edzo

A cooking class geared for girls in Behchoko is scheduled to run from Aug. 16 to 25, according to the Tlicho Government website.

The class is available to girls aged eight and up and is taking place at the Behchoko Cultural Centre from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m.

Participants were expected to learn baking and techniques, including how to follow recipes.

- Kassina Ryder

Youth stay fit in Fort Good Hope

Radilih Koe'/Fort Good Hope

Children and youth in Fort Good Hope will be keeping fit this fall, thanks to an exercise program called Dry Land Fitness, said recreation co-ordinator Freda Kelly.

The recreation department is partnering with the RCMP to deliver the program, which is scheduled to run every Saturday from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m., beginning on Sept. 3.

"They did it last year, too," Kelly said. "The kids enjoyed it."

The program is expected to take place at the Chief T'Selehye School gym. Anyone between the ages of five and 15 are encouraged to sign up.

- Kassina Ryder

Northern Life Museum to hold annual meeting

Thebacha/Fort Smith

Northern Life Museum & Cultural Centre in Fort Smith will be holding its annual general meeting next month.

The meeting will be on Sept. 18, beginning at 7 p.m. It will include the election of officers to the board of governors. Anyone wishing to vote or to be considered for election to the board of governors must be a member in good standing prior to the meeting. Memberships will not be sold at the AGM.

- Paul Bickford

Smith pool closed for maintenance

Thebacha/Fort Smith

The Fort Smith Swimming Pool is closed for annual maintenance.

The closure of the pool was scheduled to begin on Aug. 15 and end on Sept. 6. The facility is operated by the Town of Fort Smith.

- Paul Bickford

Film workshop in Fort Smith

Thebacha/Fort Smith

The Fort Smith YouthRise Project - the third-annual summer intensive film workshop in the community - is underway.

The first session began Aug. 15 and will run to Aug. 19. Another session will take place from Aug. 22 to 26.

Participants in the workshop, which is for youth aged 11 to 16 years, will learn how to make a film.

The free workshop is taking place in the theatre of the Fort Smith Rec Centre.

- Paul Bickford

Invasive plant hunt

Liidlii/Fort Simpson

Staff from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources spent some time on the afternoon of Aug. 15 picking weeds near the site of the new Catholic church.

The weed in question, scentless chamomile, is considered a highly invasive plant.

Wildlife manager Nic Larter said the species is not new to the region and has popped up a few times but the department has always had it removed.

"It's a very pretty-looking daisy," he said. "But it comes up, and if it gets a hold, it can just choke out patches."

- April Hudson

Bear awareness needed

Liidlii/Fort Simpson

Sightings of black bears inside the village of Fort Simpson has the Department of Environment and Natural Resources advising residents to be bear aware.

Regional superintendent Carl Lafferty said the bear season has been relatively quiet this year, compared to last year.

However, in recent weeks reports of bears in the area have increased.

Residents are advised to bring protection with them if they go for nature walks and to be aware of potential danger.

Last year, Lafferty said the department destroys an average of 13 to 15 bears per year in the Deh Cho region.

- April Hudson