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Since the collective noun is a “murder of crows,” this gathering west of Saskatoon could certainly qualify as a true murderers’ row (Photo by Steve Gibb)

 
As summer turns to fall...

I hope you had a great summer. Mine was pretty darn good. Thank you for asking. Here are a few thoughts from the summer that was. Pretend you are reading one of those family updates people used to send at Christmas.
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My father-in-law, Des Gore-Hickman, turned 85 in August. One of the traditions on his birthday for the past 10 or 15 years has been playing a game of touch football in the park in front of his home.
As his grandchildren became adults, they have spread out around the country a bit. Despite having only two of his nine grandsons at this year’s birthday, a mini game of football was played to keep the tradition alive.
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Saskatoon music groups moving to Knox United

The Amati Quartet and Saskatoon Children’s Choir are shifting their concert performances to Knox United Church this season. The Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra will also use the venue for its pre-holiday presentation of Handel’s Messiah.
Marla Cole, who is leading the current Amati Quartet into its 12th season, couldn’t be happier.
“The church has great acoustics. It is the perfect size for our audiences and is located downtown. And the people at Knox have been very welcoming,” she said.
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Dream Job
SREDA perfect fit for new CEO

Alex L. Fallon has been preparing for this job ever since he was 13 years old.
It was then that the new president and CEO of the Saskatoon Regional Economic Development Authority (SREDA) moved with his family from Saskatoon to the United Kingdom. It was hard to leave his friends, but Fallon quickly found his new life fascinating — and direction-setting.
“I was amazed that people had never heard of Saskatoon, never heard of Saskatchewan back then,” said Fallon in an interview a week after he took on his new position.
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Kylie Zirk
Teen rapidly rising in whitewater kayaking

It was the summer of 2009 when 11-year-old Kylie Zirk was looking for a new sport. Already a longtime avid softball player, swimmer and diver, Zirk was ready for a new challenge.
“So I joined a two week Learn to Kayak camp with the Saskatoon Sprint Kayak Club,” said Zirk, now a Grade 11 student at Tommy Douglas Collegiate, who is training for her third world kayaking championship event. “I really enjoyed the camp, but it was a summer thing, so it was another few months before I could do anything with this experience. I found my current club, the Saskatchewan Whitewater Kayak Club (SWKC), and my coach, Brendan Curson, in January of 2010.”
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Overcrowding on MVA trail one reason for Segway delay

Question: Why has there been a delay in granting a licence to the owner of the company that would like to offer Segway rentals? It seems we’re behind the times on this.
Mayor Atchison: There are a couple of issues here. I am told SGI at this time will not licence these motorized vehicles. They would probably have to cross a roadway to get to the MVA trail. The City is looking at Segways, and where a rental location might work. The other part of the equation is the Meewasin Valley Authority trail system.
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This column is a lot of bull

I have three bull stories.
These are true stories that just happen to be about bulls and not what comes out of them.
I have a farmer friend in Biggar. His operation was getting big enough to start breeding cows for the market. He travelled to the United States for top breeding bulls. On his way back to Canada, he had to register them. One of the first questions he was asked was for the names of the bulls. He quickly thought of two names for registration. The third he named K.N. I asked him why, and he said I was the first person he could think of that was full of it.
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Recyling becomes a pain in the glass

If you inadvertently toss prohibited material into your blue bin, the recycling contractor will send you an “Oops” letter. We should all be sending a similar letter to City Hall.
The only thing that should surprise us about the collection of glass in recycling bins is that all of the glass collected in the bins isn’t broken. Common sense should dictate that when you are throwing one glass container on top of another in your bin, and when the collector dumps the bin into the truck and then on the concrete floor of the depot, that the majority of the glass will break.
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Opening the door let love into my life

As I see the signs supporting door- to-door delivery of the Royal mail, I am reminded of another who regularly comes to my door, usually every other Saturday around 10:30 a.m.
For the past 20 years, members of the Jehovah’s Witnesses have been visiting my home. Some of you may wonder why I would let that happen since being visited by JW Pioneers is something that many have been taught to avoid. Which reminds me of what a comedian said not too long ago: “I was so lonely I was praying for a JW to stop by.”
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Spreading the word on mental-health illnesses

CLARA HUGHES is a woman on a mission. One of Canada’s most outstanding athletes ever is cycling across our country on what is being called Clara’s Big Ride.
Her goal is to bring awareness to mental-health illnesses. Like so many Canadians, Clara struggles with depression.
“This is going to be an epic journey, the ride of my life. And it’s all for awareness of mental health, breaking down the stigma when it comes to mental illnesses,” she told CBC.
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Living with anxiety
People don’t understand panic attacks, but I do

I’m having a bad day.
It is not like this every day. Today is one of the really bad ones. I am feeling anxious.
The anxiety has been controlled to a large extent. I remember the hundreds of days when it wasn’t.
I would leave restaurants in the middle of meals. Sandy was left to either eat alone or follow me out the door. After she paid the bill that is. I would leave movies, leaving her to watch them alone. I remember watching Titanic from the door of the theatre; gosh, it was a long movie. Once, when we were in Las Vegas, we had fourth-row centre seats for Mama Mia.
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