Canada Post Office
Skate Park
Lakehouse Learning Centre
Cortes Community Radio
Cortes Thrift Store
Cortes Pottery Guild
Reel Youth
Friends of Cortes Island
Summer Youth Program
Family Music Camp
Cortes Island Play School Parents & Tots
Hall Office:
Monday 11-4
Wednesday 11-4
Friday 10-4

Phone: 250-935-0015
Fax: 250-935-0026

983 Beasley Road
Box 222
Manson’s Landing, BC

Emergency Power Project Completed



The SCCA Board is pleased to inform the community that our Emergency Power project is complete.

At the request of Regional Director Noba Anderson and the Gas Tax Advisory Committee, the SCCA was able to achieve cost savings and efficiencies in the kitchen renovation budget to help fund our Emergency Power Project.

The days of closing the Hall due to power cuts are now over. Over the years we’ve had power failures and cancelled our Community Christmas Dinners, or lost Market Days and other community events.

We have a new 35kw generator, to supply all of the lights in the building, the well pump, water system, fire alarms and septic, plus the full kitchen, including the exhaust system, hot water and refrigeration.

The Hall has been extensively rewired and upgraded for the transfer panels to the generator and for the new kitchen appliances.

All of the lighting in the building has been replaced with new LED fixtures, or LED bulbs. This will reduce our Hydro costs and carbon footprint, in addition to reducing the load requirements of the generator.

All of our refrigeration is new, Energy Star rated, and efficient to modern standards.

The new stove, ovens and grill are powered by propane, which supplies more BTU’s, cooking ease, and lower operating costs than commercial grade electrical ranges.

Mansons Hall Community Center now has the capacity to cook and cater up to 175 people, host community events, private functions and the Friday Market, rain or shine, during power interruptions and winter storms.

A big thank-you to Mel Dery from Quadra Electric, for installing the new electrical system and rewiring the Hall, and to Jean Fontaine and the crew at Blue Moon Woodworks.

The SCCA would like to thank our Regional Director Noba Anderson, the Cortes Island Gas Tax Committee, plus the Strathcona Regional District’s board and staff for their funding support of this Emergency Power Project via a Community Works Grant.

SCCA AGM Wednesday Aug 9, 2017

Come out to our AGM on Wed Aug 9th at 7 pm in Manson’s Hall.

Find out how your community hall is doing, and what we have been up to for the past year.

Memberships can be renewed at the door.

Summer Program 2017

The Summer Youth Program is back once again with a fantastic line up of programs. You can register online, or in the hall office on Fridays. See the 2017 Brochure here. Some programs fill up fast, so go ahead and register now.

Manson’s Kitchen Completed!

 The Board of the SCCA is very happy to announce our “new and renewed” community kitchen is complete and ready for use!

Fabulous new kitchen

Fabulous new kitchen

 The Board is hosting an “open house” this FRIDAY MAY 5th from 12:30 until 2, with coffee and snacks. Please come and see this wonderful new community resource!

 The result of four years of fundraising, demolition and construction, the new expanded kitchen has commercial grade fittings and equipment including:

  • a new exhaust system with fire protection
  • non-skid flooring
  • three new sinks
  • three fridges
  • an upright freezer,
  • an industrial-grade dishwasher that does a load in 60 seconds, and only uses 1.6 liters of water,
  • two ovens, a 36″griddle and six gas burners.

 Fully equipped with stainless steel cookware, bowls, rice cooker, food warmer, coffee machine, the kitchen has all the basics to prepare and serve meals for up to 125 people.  Just bring food!

In addition, Manson’s Hall now has sufficient dishes, cutlery, serving bowls, platters and supplies to cater sit-down meals for up to 125 persons available for rent.

The kitchen also provides a VIHA certified food preparation facility for smaller groups, lunches, meetings and catering private events, as well as for private-label food production. Market vendors, chocolatiers, picklers, jammers, and bakers can rent by the hour.

 The SCCA Board’s vision has been first and foremost to provide a facility that is a benefit to islanders, so that Manson’s Landing Community Centre can comfortably host a wide range of events such as fund raisers, weddings, community dinners etc.

 Even during power outages the kitchen will have full cooking capacity as soon as our new generator and transfer panels are installed.

 As the new facility becomes integrated into the life of Manson’s Landing Community Center, the Board hopes to see the cafe re-open for Friday Market lunches, bringing back the 20-year tradition of great food and social connection that’s been missed so much the past four years!

 Big “THANK YOUS” to Jean Fontaine and the crew at Blue Moon Woodworks for doing a first-class reconstruction job, as well as to the many trades and subcontractors, and to Julian Ayers for steering the project to completion.

 Even bigger THANK YOU’S to the many islanders who donated personally, community groups and granting agencies that contributed funding, especially the Seniors Society, CCCU Legacy Program, New Horizons Grant, a One-Time Special Gaming Grant, the SRD’s Community Works Grant, and to Noba Anderson our Regional Director.

 We acknowledge the financial assistance of the Province of British Columbia, their annual Community Gaming Grant helps to fund many of the SCCA’s programs and capital improvements.

 For kitchen rental information and guidelines, please contact the hall office at 250 935 0015.

 Yours truly,

The SCCA Board


Year End Appeal

Dear Cortes Community member,

As many of you are aware, since the failure of the “Hall Tax” initiative several years ago, Mansons Community Hall has been operating on a mix of grants, donations and fundraising activities. Needless to say the process has been quite tense at times with staff and board members not knowing quite where funds to cover the next month’s budget commitments will come from. However, we have muddled through, until now…

AT present we find ourselves in a tough situation where we need $10,000 to pay bills that are critical to getting us through the next year, with insurance being the big one. We have just two months to find this money.

At the same time, we are truly excited about the amazing renovation that has been done to our old kitchen and at the prospect of being able to re-open it as a food preparation and food service facility for islanders.

We are also very happy with the way numerous programs and initiatives that use Mansons Hall are flourishing and providing amazing benefits to our community.

But… and we hate to say it, but if we don’t find that $10K in the next few weeks, the hall and all these programs will grind to a halt.

This is the stark reality we face and the only place we have to turn is to you, our island community members.

However, one good turn deserves another so in return for your support we would like to offer you at least a little immortality… Here’s how it works. In return for your $100 donation we will create a bronze plaque with your name on it* and mount it on a display board to be hung on the wall of the Pioneer Room when it re-opens as a café. That $100 donation also earns you recognition as one of our “Sustaining Members” and all the glory and status that goes with it!

Naturally, if $100 is too much of a stretch, we are happy to accept smaller donations. Every little bit helps and believe us, our backs are against the wall.

So please make use of the donation form below and donate whatever you can to keep the doors of Mansons Community Hall open. At the same time rest assured the SCCA board is seriously looking into long term funding strategies that will help avoid us having to do this type of emergency fund raising ever again.

Thanks for your generous support!

The SCCA Board

*You can decline the plaque and remain anonymous if you so wish.



YES! I want to support the SCCA with a $100 donation.

(Or other amount, please specify $______  )

NAME: __________________________________________________________________________

ADDRESS:  ____________________________________________  P.O. Box ___________________

CITY (e.g. Mansons, Whaletown) _____________________________   POSTAL CODE: __________

Please make cheques payable to; SCCA or Southern Cortes Community Association

     I wish to make this donation anonymous.

Summer Youth Recreation Program

Registration for the Summer Youth Recreation Program (SYRP) begins on June 15th from 1pm – 4pm at Manson’s Hall. Click here for the online brochure SYRP 2016  You can pick up the brochure at the hall office if you would like a hard copy. Here is the link to REGISTER NOW. We look forward to another wonderful summer program!

Family Music Camp Back Again!

Family Music Camp is so much fun that we are going to do it again for the third year! The camp will be a bit longer this year due to popular demand. We will run from Sunday Aug 21 – Thursday August 25, with one free afternoon to enjoy summer activities. Calvin Cairns and Paul O’Brien will be giving a concert on Saturday August 20th to kick off the fun. All workshop participants are encouraged to arrive on Cortes on Saturday and attend the concert. Register as part of the Summer Youth Recreation Program.

Kitchen Renovation Underway

We are pleased to report to the community that so far, $63,000 has been raised through generous donations from the community, as well as grants. Our budget goal is $131,000.00 to renovate and fully equip a modern, to code, health-approved kitchen.

Costs include basic renovation, expansion of the footprint, new electrical wiring, flooring, stove, dishwasher, convection oven, cold table, small appliances,  refrigeration, stainless steel canopy and exhaust system. Included in the budget are also dishes, small wares, pots and pans, cash register etc.

The Board has given approval to commence Phase 1 in mid July, consisting primarily of opening up the area, levelling the floor and new subflooring, installation of a 200amp panel and power supply and new skylight (that doesn’t leak!).

Over the summer months the final plan will be developed, go for approval by VIHA and we will begin equipment purchasing.

We plan to start installing equipment and fixtures in the fall, depending on the success of fundraising efforts over the summer.

Our grants are primarily “matching funds” so every dollar donated privately is matched by the granting agency.

The SCCA is a Registered Charity and a tax-deductible receipt will be provided for all donations on request.

In the past, the kitchen was leased to private operators. Our new “Community Kitchen” is intended to provide food services that benefit Islanders and support SCCA programs:

The cafe will be open for morning coffee and baked treats.

Monday: Seniors Day.

Weekly lunches specials on a cost-recovery/break even basis, offering a fixed-price low-cost lunch menu for our Seniors. Later we hope to offer “heat ‘n serve” pre-packaged dinners, and eventually a program similar to Meals-on-wheels for housebound Elders.

Younger folks are welcome to eat too, with a regular-priced menu.

Wednesday: Family Day.

Featuring a children’s menu. All revenues will go to support the Playschool and children’s programs.

Friday: Market Day

Full-service menu, bringing back the legendary burritos, grilled sandwiches and great desserts.

Proceeds to support SCCA operations.

In addition to cafe-style food service, the Board intends to integrate the kitchen into community life, as follows:

-Community Organization Fundraising: facility rental to local groups for fundraising lunches and dinners.

-Special Event catering facility: including fundraisers, Community meals (ie Xmas dinner), and rental for weddings, celebrations etc.

-Youth: provide job experience, education credits and skills training.

-Education: through local learning institutions, food preparation, canning and cooking classes.

-Market Vendors and local food producers: rental of certified kitchen for preparation of food for retail sale and private label food products.

This exciting addition to the Hall services is dependent on community support, please help us to realize the vision and make a donation today!

With thanks from the Kitchen Committee, and the SCCA Board.


Cortes Family Music Camp 2015

The dates for this year’s Family Music Camp are Monday, August 24th thru Thursday, August 27th! REGISTER NOW

(Click on the photo for more information)

The camp kicks off with an instructor’s concert featuring Calvin Cairns, Paul O’Brien, Anne Schaefer and Claudia Raaen at the Mansons Hall on Sunday, August 23rd – the day before camp starts. Stay tuned for details, i.e. time, cost.


See you there!


Cortes Island Playschool: Teachers & Registration

The Cortes Island Playschool is pleased to announce our new teaching team for the 2014/2015 year. We have Hired Jen Stevens as the lead teacher, and Alanah Caron as the assistant teacher.

Jen Stevens has worked as an ECE teacher on Vancouver Island for the past eight years. In 2004 she completed her diploma program at VIU in Nanaimo and Waldorf Early Childhood training through the West coast Institute for studies in Anthroposophy. Jen is excited about working as the lead teacher at the Playschool this year.

Alanah Caron has worked as a Waldorf assistant and is in the process of becoming a certified ECE assistant. Alanah brings her warm and gentle nature to the playschool and looks forward to helping create a nature based, magical environment for the children.

 Image 4

The playschool hours will be Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm. The fee is $160.00 per month. Classes will begin on Tuesday September 9th at 10:00 am. Come in to the Manson’s Hall office Mon/Wed/Fri 11:00 am – 4:00 pm to register your child.. Talk to Mary in the hall office if you need a subsidy. Office closed Mon Sep 1 for the holiday.

Cortes Island Playschool Employment Opportunity

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The Cortes Island Playschool, operated by the SCCA, has an opening for an experienced teacher (ECE certified) AND an assistant (ECE assistant), starting September 2014. Hours will be Tuesdays and Thursdays 10am – 2pm.

We want the program to be:

• Child-centred;

• Play-centred;

• Nature/Arts/Music/Movement-based

• Inclusive

Skill set:

• Phenomenal interpersonal skills. Able to communicate effectively with children, parents, Manson’s Hall Manager and the SCCA Board.

• Depth of experience with young children.

• Ability to create a strong daily rhythm while maintaining flexibility

• Strong organizational skills.

• Ability to meet each child’s developmental stage.

• Ability to gently teach literacy, numeracy and other pre-school learning objectives within the context of play, nature, and the arts.

• Ability to create a compassionate environment, supporting healthy peer interactions among children.

• Ability to create an attractive program for children and parents.

Please send cover letter noting the position(s) you are interested in, resumé and phone numbers for 2 references by Friday, August 8th to or mail to Cortes Island Playschool, Box 222, Manson’s Landing, BC, V0P 1K0. Only applicants selected for interview will be contacted.

New! Permaculture Workshops added to the Summer Youth Program

Permaculture for Kids with Maria McKenty & guest

*Presented by Lakehouse Learning Society & FOCI

Permaculture is a way of seeing and thinking that reveals the beauty, balance and patterns in the natural world. Come and explore these principles through fun indoor and outdoor activities like nature walks, drawings, outdoor games, and much more! See these patterns in action in different natural ecosystems and how they relate to human habitats here on Cortes. This course will be lead by Maria McKenty, an experienced and enthusiastic permaculturist.

*Lakehouse Learning Society is a local society that runs democratic education programs on Cortes Island. Friends of Cortes Island is a charitable society that promotes awareness and respect for the earth and its people throughout Cortes Island and beyond. All registration proceeds go towards reducing tuition for Lakehouse Society’s programs.

 Kids ages 8-12

Minimum 6 registrants max 12

Cost= $50

2 day program

Saturday July 26 – 1-4PM

Sunday July 27 – 10AM-3PM

Lakehouse (old library room at Manson’s Hall). The main entrance is from the parking lot level.

 Permaculture Foundations with Maria McKenty & guest

*Presented by Lakehouse Learning Society & FOCI

 Permaculture is a way of seeing and thinking that reveals the beauty, balance and patterns in the natural world. Come explore the basic principles and prime concepts. Discover how using succession, stacking, guilds, optimized edge, and energy networks give us a toolkit for creating gardens, farm, homesteads, businesses and communities that are regenerative, resilient and sustainable. This course will be lead by Maria McKenty, an experienced and enthusiastic permaculturist.
 *Lakehouse Learning Society is a local society that runs democratic education programs on Cortes Island. Friends of Cortes Island is a charitable society that promotes awareness and respect for the earth and its people throughout Cortes Island and beyond. All registration proceeds go towards reducing tuition for Lakehouse Society’s programs.

Kids ages 13 and up

Minimum 6 registrants . max 12

Cost = $50

Type – 2 day program

Friday July 25 – 10AM-3PM

Saturday July 26 – 10AM – noon

Lakehouse (old library room at Manson’s Hall). The main entrance is from the parking lot level.




Cortes Day Saturday July 19th

cortes day poster 2014


Parade at 11 am. To join the parade, meet at Potlach Road at 10:45

Come and enjoy the fun!

Please leave your dogs at home.

North Atlantic Trio play Manson’s Hall Tue July 15

NATposter-1See more here

Thank You!


Manson’s Hall Renovation Thank Yous


 Arbutus Room


If you take the opportunity to have a good look around Manson’s Hall, you’ll see that the organizational efforts and hands-on work of a great many people over the last few years have given new life to our community centre. Since last July, major improvements have been made in the playschool, both upstairs rooms, both main floor offices and the bathrooms and hallways. All of the renovations were done with the help of grants, individual donations of money and materials, and hundreds of hours of volunteer labour.

The Southern Cortes Community Association, which owns and operates the hall, was fortunate to receive almost $250,000 in grant funding for renovations in the last year, half of it from federal government programs for infrastructure improvement, enabling accessibility and New Horizons for Seniors. The Cortes Island Seniors Society’s support was important in winning these grants. We are especially grateful to Sandra Wood for her skilled and professional grant writing and reporting and her continued dedication to finding funding sources for SCCA projects.

Thanks to Cortes Regional Director Noba Anderson who wrote letters of support for grants and who managed to make federal gas tax funding available to non-profit societies, enabling the SCCA to receive about $84,000 in funding to install five heat pumps which are now are the hall’s primary source of heating and have the capacity to cool the hall as well. They have greatly reduced our furnace oil consumption and our overall heating costs.

We were fortunate to receive almost $36,000 from the Tides Foundation as a result of Julian Ayer’s proposals for renovations to the playschool and to the old library room, now leased to the Lakehouse Learning Society. Another $8,000 toward those renovations came from the Coastal Community Credit Union’s Legacy Fund. Our thanks to Gary Cork who represented Cortes on the Legacy committee.

Extensive renovations require a lot of on-the-spot decisions. Jean Fontaine and his Blue Moon Woodworks crew solved every problem along the way, including challenging repairs to meet a structural engineer’s specifications. Jean’s construction knowledge and management skill made for steady progress while still allowing the community to use the hall for many activities. The projects provided employment for dozens of islanders. Many of them donated some of their time or worked for less than their usual rates. Jean donated more than 100 hours of his time and many materials and also trucked supplies from Comox weekly without charging for hauling or ferries.

The Blue Moon crew included Ro Gagnon, Sebastian Laberge, J.P. Lafortune, Eli Morris, Holger Schramm, Marc Provencher, Max Lee, Eddy Mitchell, John Muldoe, Toby Roman, Mike Bullock, Dan Van de Laar, Scott Martin, Chris Walker and Steve Mawdsley.

Jim Kearney built and hung the new exterior doors on the main hall and playschool with help from Ian le Cheminant, Tom Bohart and Ali Lennox for less than his original estimates. Local sawmill operators Bruce Ellingsen, Ron Wolda and To’q Woodworks at Klahoose provided lumber at reduced rates, and Dan Van de Laar did the same with drywall finishing and painting. Dan and Scotty Martin dealt with the challenges of replumbing the bathrooms, also donating time. Ted & Carol Hansen and Izaak Tidler came on short notice to make electrical changes.

The SCCA’s renovations committee chair Jim Murphy, who donated his time and talents in the Pioneer Room, main hall kitchen and post office in previous years, volunteered this spring to oversee the finishing of the bathrooms and what we are now calling the Arbutus Room above the Pioneer Room. David Rousseau provided essential cost estimates for grant applications and helped install the new metal partitions in the bathrooms. Eddy Mitchell, our general maintenance man whose specialty is flooring, installed the finish floors in the playschool, Lakehouse room, the bathrooms and the Arbutus Room which is now available for rent for small group meetings and activities. Mark Appleyard helped with the floor repairs and David Drysdale helped repaint the Arbutus Room.

The main hallways were repainted by volunteers Ann Dewar, Lynn Marttila, Mary Lavelle and Steve & Gail Ringwood. Steve also donated his time and crane truck for lifting and hauling throughout the renovations. Clyde Dawson and Tyler Vega helped repaint the playschool. Doug Brown at the U-Brew provided free storage for playschool furnishings while the room was being redone. Howard Eaton donated insulation and sound-proofing. David Rousseau, Barry Gregory, David Shipway and Trygve Ellingsen contributed their construction knowledge to planning and estimates.

Eva and Buddy Parker reduced the cost of rooms at the Cortes Island Motel for our off-island heat pump contractors. Dieter Broemer of Nova-Tech HVAC Services in Fanny Bay and sheet metal technician Frank Van Den Diggelaar efficiently and expertly installed the heat pumps for less than their original estimate. Mel Dery of Quadra Island Electric gave us the lowest quote for our new 400-amp electrical service and did a professional job quickly.

Andrew and Kelly Ferguson allowed waste wood from the renos to be burn-piled on their property. Thanks to John Messent, Dave McCoy, John Vosper and Robbie Driediger for machine time and materials and to Myrna Kerr for donating new opening windows for the playschool. Jim, Mark Christian and Dave Popkey turfed out the café kitchen and Real Dufresne hauled away the old main hall oil furnace and junk appliances. The Cortes Connection and Lane 8 brought us parts and materials from Campbell River. Apologies to anyone whose help I’ve overlooked.

This year’s renovations allowed us to complete the space shuffle which began with relocating Cortes Radio to the portable building two years ago and creating the new post office last year. The SCCA now has long-term leases with Cortes Radio, Lakehouse Learning Society, Reel Youth and Postmistress Jaime La Grandeur and ongoing rental agreements with the Friends of Cortes Island, the Pottery Guild and the Cortes Seniors.

All of the programs and uses of the hall would not function smoothly without the regular attention given to the hall by the SCCA’s part-time, paid staff. Hall manager Mary Lavelle and assistant Mark Christian, bookkeeper Marilyn Fitzmaurice, janitor Josee Gagnon and Eddy Mitchell on maintenance do excellent work and are essential to a community centre that is being used almost every day of the year. It was a challenge to keep operating during construction, and they met it. Each one of them deserves our appreciation for their ongoing dedication and adaptability.

The members of the Board of Directors put a lot of energy into finding ways to finance the things that need to be done and into making decisions in the best interests of the membership. They also donate their time and skills to improving the facility and how it operates. As president of the SCCA for the last three years, my special thanks to directors Julian Ayers, Myrna Kerr, Jim Murphy and Desta Beattie for their years of service and to Diane Daly, David Drysdale, Mags Johnston and Cathy Winter for joining us last year. Cathy took on the treasurer’s responsibilities last September, and her accounting knowledge and experience improved our systems and greatly helped with our grant reporting.

At the May 22, 2014 AGM, Jim, Cathy, Desta and I retired from the board. The continuing directors are Julian, Diane, David, Mags and Myrna. Jenny Hartwick and Andy Vine were elected to the board. I am confident that with so many capable people committed to using and maintaining Manson’s Hall, it will serve us well for many years to come. Finally, thanks to my wife Sherry for her support, patience and good advice throughout the four years I was on the board.