THE WEEK — May 30: ‘Dirty’ cruise ships win big

‘Dirty’ cruise ships win big, synagogue offers a frocking good time and Monday says a Fehr goodbye.

Some cruise ships got a nod for dirty achievements

‘Dirty’ cruise ships win big

Cruise ships are in hot water — or, rather, dirty air — again with James Bay residents, as the second-annual Dirty Air Cruise Ship of the Year Awards were announced this week.

The awards, sternly handed out by the James Bay Neighbourhood Association (JBNA), are pinned on those tourist-dollar filled boats that bring with them a penchant for high levels of sulphur dioxide (SO2). Winners were chosen from raw data readings taken throughout 2012 from the SO2 monitoring station in James Bay.

The big scorer in the 2012 Individual Ship category is the Carnival Spirit, that was associated with a one-hour SO2 level above the 35 parts per billion (ppb), cited with creating moderate health risks for those sensitive to SO2, after the North American Emission Control Area (ECA) standards came into effect on Aug. 1, 2012.

The 2012 Team Category award goes to Westerdam and Golden Princess, two of three ships associated with scoring the highest recorded SO2 levels in 2012 (exceeding 2011 levels), and exceeding World Health Organization guidelines.

While JBNA representatives say the overall air quality rated better than in 2011, it is still not at sufficient levels to be safe for residents, especially those suffering from asthematic conditions.

“I don’t believe we should have anyone creating this type of pollution and expecting other people to absorb it,” says Marg Gardiner, JBNA president. “The cruise industries are not being good global citizens and they need to know they will be monitored.”

Learn more about the awards at: jbna.org.

Expect a frocking good time

Canada’s oldest synagogue will be blowing out its 150th candles this week, and is hoping the entire community will turn out to celebrate.

A grand ceremony to dedicate B.C.’s first synagogue in 1863 will be re-enacted on Sun., June 2 — 150 years to the day after Congregation Emanu-El was established in downtown Victoria. A parade will start at the Freemasons’ Temple (650 Fisgard) at 11:15am, accompanied by the music of the Naden Band. A re-enactment of the cornerstone laying will occur at 12:30pm, then the synagogue (1461 Blanshard) will be open for a historical exhibit until a gala celebration will be held at the Empress Hotel at 6pm.

Many non-Jewish donors helped to construct the synagogue in the Gold Rush era of the early 1860s. Celebrants of all denominations in Sunday’s event will be dressed in period costume, wearing top hats, frock coats, long skirts and bonnets. Proceeds of the gala and event will help restore the building to its original glory, and preserve the synagogue for the next 150 years.

Learn more or purchase gala tickets for $150 at CongregationEmanu-el.ca, or 250-382-0615.

Monday says a Fehr goodbye

Our hats are held to our chests this week, as long-time Monday Art Director Bob Fehr met his final deadline last Tuesday.

Fehr, better known as the man responsible for that classic logo we still know as Monday and the look and design of the product up until the mid-2000s, was diagnosed with terminal cancer in May 2012. He died on Tues., May 21. Fehr leaves behind Lorna MacDonald, his partner of 39 years, their sons Alastair and Callum and much loved dog, Jet.

Fehr joined the paper in its earliest days, working aside Monday founders Gene Miller, Andrew Lynch and George Heffelfinger. During his time from circa 1979 to 2004, Fehr directed nearly 1,000 covers and an artistic legacy through the footprint Monday held. Since then, his myriad design endeavours including art, photography, print, TV, web and even toys can be seen at BobFehr.com.

“Bob was very proud of the crew he worked with. I don’t think they ever missed a deadline,” says MacDonald. “You have to remember, production when he started was waxing  letraset — you might have to ask an old person about that one!”

Fehr was also keen on computer innovation in the production department, and was involved in setting up the first computer systems at Monday. He had a degree in fine arts from the University of Manitoba and, MacDonald says, always enjoyed the challenge of creating graphic interpretations of the cover stories.

In lieu of flowers, the family has asked for donations to be sent to the Victoria Hospice and Palliative Care Foundation: VictoriaHospiceFoundation.org. M

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