Category

BUSINESS

Category

Listen on Apple Podcasts

“After a 20-year career in engineering, I was looking for a new challenge. While mulling over a few ideas I took a course on cider making to improve my home cider skills and thought ….hey wait a minute! And so a project was born. We found our 12-acre farm in January 2014, picked out the site of our future cidery, and made an offer.”* ~ Rachel Bolongaro, Fraser Valley Cider Company

In this episode, we visit with Rachel Bolongara, owner of Fraser Valley Cider Company, and discuss:

  • How Fraser Valley Cider Company got its start.
  • Rachel describes the orchard that they have on their property and the challenges of growing apples in the Fraser Valley.
  • How local businesses like the local wineries and Fraser Valley Cider Company are working together.
  • What have Rachel‘s biggest challenges been starting this new venture?
  • What is one of Rachel‘s favourite things about living and doing business in the Fraser Valley?
  • Rachel describes her upcoming opening weekend and the special events that are planned. They now have their lounge license and are able to offer wine, and cider-based cocktails. Expect some great entertainment and food.
  • Rachel talks about where they get their fruit from and the amount they need to make cider.
  • Rachel describes the difference between their traditional craft cider and the cider you might buy in a store.

Fraser Valley Cider Company

*Website: https://www.fraservalleycider.ca
Photos and Instagram (used with permission): @fraservalleycider
Location: Fraser Valley Cider Company, 22128 – 16th Avenue, Langley, BC

St. Patrick’s Day 2021: What’s Happening This Year in the Fraser Valley?

One of the first yearly celebrations to be hit by COVID-19 last year was St. Patrick’s Day, so this year we wanted to take a look around the Fraser Valley to see if there is anything that we can do to take part in this annual global celebration of Irish culture.

As you might have guessed, there is very little happening in the way of events. As we contacted the different pubs and event organizers who have done things in the past, the message was almost always the same, “due to COVID we are laying low this year.” But that doesn’t mean that some of the restaurants and pubs, in particular, aren’t attempting to at least give a little nod to remembering St. Patrick.

If you are in the mood for celebrating St. Patrick’s Day this year, here are several things to consider in the Fraser Valley:

Abbotsford

The Canadian Brewhouse – Abbotsford 

Green beer will be available at The Canadian Brewhouse. ON SPECIAL ALL DAY: $8.99 Green Beer Tankards, $8.99 Guinness Tankards

Location: Abbotsford, 3122 Mt. Lehman Rd. Phone: 604-625-5433 Website: https://thecanadianbrewhouse.com/

Langley

Dead Frog BrewingDead Frog Brewery

From the Dead Frog Brewery Website: “Wednesday, March 17th – Looking for a wee bit o’ fun, good eats, and great beer? Look no further! (On) Wednesday, March 17th we’ll have Bangers & Mash, an all-natural green beer crafted by our Brewmaster Cole, and stouts on Nitro! Green beer (naturally green – NO food colouring) $1 off 12oz glasses of Commander Imperial Stout Bangers & Mash! We’re open from 11 am until 10 pm. See you there!”

For more information about Bangers & Mash see https://deadfrog.ca/tasting-room/bangers-and-mash/
Location: Dead Frog Brewery #105 8860 201 St. Langley
Photo: Government of BC

Surrey

Dublin Crossing Dublin Crossin

Normally, Dublin Crossing is the place to go in Surrey on St. Patrick’s Day, but it looks like they won’t be holding a special event this year. They are open, however, so you can always stop by year-round for an Irish pub experience!

Location: 18789 FRASER HIGHWAY, #101-18789 Fraser Highway, Surrey Phone: (604) 575-5470
Website: https://www.dublincrossing.com/
Photo: https://www.dublincrossing.com/gallery/

The Clayton PubThe Clayton Pub

In response to our inquiry to find out what was happening at the Clayton Pub They responded:

“(The Clayton Pub) will have green beer, but with Covid restrictions, it makes it really hard to go further than that. Wednesdays are normally our crab night and we tested an idea to dye our crab legs green in the spirit of St Paddys day, LOL this did not work out, the crab legs looked gross green so we scrapped that idea.”

Location: 5640 188 St, Surrey, BC V3S 4N5 Phone +778-571-1615 Email: info@theclaytonpub.com Website: https://www.theclaytonpub.com/

White Hart Public House

Due to covid restrictions in place the White Hart Public House doesn’t have any events going on this year, however, they will have Green $4.50 pints of Red Truck all day long to celebrate, in the safest manner possible. The White Hart Public House was voted Surrey’s Best Pub, Burger, Appetizers, Happy Hour, Breakfast & Brunch, and Patio Dining in The Surrey Leaders Readers Choice Awards 2020!

Location: 8593 132 St., Surrey Phone – (604) 503-5735

Donegal’s Irish House

Donegal’s Irish House has decided to address the challenges we are facing with COVID in a creative way that many of us have become familiar with their “St Paddy’s Day Party (for 2) in a Box.”

Here’s what they have to say:

“With all that’s going on in the world these days, we’ve set up a St Patrick’s Day Party in a Box for you, so you can celebrate Paddy’s Day in style with your significant other, in the comfort and safety of you own home…..there will be no grand parties this year, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get all the same goodies you would have if your come and partied with us.

“Order yours now, supplies are limited, and when they are sold out, there will be no more! Email us through this page, or via our Facebook page to order, links to both in the contact tab on this site.”

See their website for more information. https://donegals.pub/promos%2Fevents

There are several ways to potentially lower your tax bill when you understand all of the deductions, credits, and strategies that are available to you.

Increase Retirement Contributions
• Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) contributions are tax-deductible, so contribute before March 1, 2021, to write it off your 2020 taxes.
• Maximize tax savings by deferring your RRSP deduction if you anticipate moving up a tax bracket next year.

Deduct Child Care Costs
• For families who paid someone to watch the kids while they worked.
• Deduct up to $8,000 per child under age seven, and $5,000 for kids aged seven to 16.

taxes fraser valley real estate mike wilson

Credits for Student Loan Interest
• Applies federally and provincially.
• To determine your credit amount, multiply the lowest tax rate by the loan interest amount.
• This interest credit can be applied on any return for the next five years, so claim it when it works best for you.

Claiming Medical Expenses
• Eligible medical expenses include contact lenses, hearing aids, hospital care, travel costs for medical care, and many more.
• If you’re filing with your spouse, it could be better for the partner with the lower net income to claim the expenses.

Home office fraser valley mike wilson

Home Office Deduction
• Designed for the self-employed, so salaried employees who worked remotely in 2020 should check the Canada Revenue Service’s website for details on what they
may claim.
• Always double-check your claims to make sure everything is accurate and eligible.

Take care,

Mike Wilson
Remax Treeland
604-533-3491
mike@fvlifestyle.com

Want more ways to save come tax time? Call me for a referral to a trusted tax professional!

SOURCE: Canada Revenue Service
© 2021 Buffini & Company. All Rights Reserved. RMMK JANUARY EREPORT C. Used with permission.

Photos: Unsplash

We are always looking for blog writers to write about the Fraser Valley.

You can write up to four blog posts per month that highlight a Fraser Valley park, neighborhood, shopping mall, event, restaurant, business, or recreation center. During COVID you could spotlight businesses that have an online presence or promotion.

Each post should be approximately 500 words and include:

  • 1 – 3 original photos or posted with permission of the photographer/business owner. (Name the photo file with keywords and alt text before you upload it to the website.)
  • A link to the website of the business, government page, or wherever the reader can get more information.
    Additional contact information in the footer for businesses including web address, business owner or PR contact info, physical address, phone number, email address, and social media profile links.
  • A link to the neighborhood page on the real estate website, if there is one.
  • Collaborate with the editor on a content schedule.

Keywords

  • Keywords include the name of the business, park, or event, and the relevant city/neighborhood.
  • Fraser Valley should be mentioned at least once and twice when it flows naturally.
  • “Things to do” and “things to do in X” X=the city/neighborhood and/or “Fraser Valley”.
    If relevant, include “real estate” or “land” or “property”.

Social Media Support

Facebook and Posts (6-8)

  • Three posts should be scheduled for the first three weeks after the blog is posted. Each post should include a unique blog take away plus “click here (or on the link or on the image below) for X, Y, Z). Make it interesting and compelling!
  • Schedule three more posts for the three months following publishing. All posts should be scheduled for different times of day and days of the week so we can hit different audiences and split test the best times for views and engagement. 
  • If the topic is seasonal, add another two scheduled posts for the same time next year. 

Instagram – 2 posts and 2 stories

Notify editor when Social Media posts go out.

– – – – –
Interested?

  • Send your resume and links to one or two blog posts that you have written to rod@impactintl.net.
  • If you don’t have any current blog posts write a 500-word blog post about an event or business in the Fraser Valley using the above criteria. If we post it, we will pay you $75.
  • No phone calls, please.
  • We will only respond to suitable candidates.

JANUARY 2021 UPDATE: Fraser Valley real estate market full steam ahead in January; another record-setter for property sales*

SURREY, BC – In a month that is usually one of the quietest in real estate, Fraser Valley’s market continued at a breakneck pace, producing the strongest January sales on record as well as a modest uptick in new listings.

The Fraser Valley Real Estate Board processed a total of 1,718 sales of all property types on its Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in January 2021, an increase of 76 percent compared to January 2020 and 18 percent fewer than were processed in December 2020. Sales in January set a new, record high for the month; 72 percent above the 10-year average, and 28 percent higher than the previous record of 1,338 sales set in January 2016.

“Buyers are very motivated right now,” said Chris Shields, President of the Board, “Lending rates are the lowest they’ve ever been, your housing dollar goes further in the Fraser Valley and we’ve seen a societal shift in the last year in how people value their homes. People are asking us to find them more space.

From Mike

The market continues to be very active even with COVID-19. Two factors that I like to point out about the market are:
1_ Interest rates are very low, so if you have a secure job there’s never been a cheaper time to borrow money.
2_ There is not a lot of supply right now so you need to have a solid plan in place for both selling and buying your next home. Of course, this is where my experience can help.

I’m here to help you in any way I can during these tough times. If there is anything I can do to help you and your family, please do not hesitate to reach out.

Take care,

Mike Wilson
Remax Treeland
604-533-3491
mike@fvlifestyle.com

Oh, by the way…if you know of someone who would appreciate the level of service I provide,
please call me with their name and contact information. I’ll be happy to follow up and take
great care of them in a way that is healthy and safe.

_ _ _ _ _

*Source: Fraser Valley Real Estate Board

If you live in the Fraser Valley you may think that you will have to travel for hours to Nahatlatch Canyon, Thompson, Coquihalla, or Green Canyon (Whistler / Pemberton) to go river rafting, but excellent rafting is closer than you think.

River rafting is available just an hour away from Vancouver on the Chilliwack River. You can have a variety of adventures on the river from heart-pumping rapids to a bit more of a scenery family-oriented ride.

River rafting is available year-round. We happened to see the good folks from Chilliwack River Rafting several weeks ago when we went fishing and snapped a few pics and this video.

Chilliwack River Rafting offers*

  • Year-round rafting adventures
  • Stunning Cascade mountain scenery and wildlife
  • Professional, friendly guides

*For more on Chilliwack River Rafting see: https://www.chilliwackriverrafting.com/

We are noticing a lot of discussion on Social Media about ordering dinner in for Christmas. Is this something you are considering? The comments we are seeing include how difficult it is going to be to get together this holiday, but we can still support local business.

If you are considering a catered meal for Christmas, here are some Fraser Valley catering companies to consider:*

Photo: Jan’s On The Beach

Jan’s on the Beach Restaurant and Catering

At Jan’s you can call in at 604 531-5444 or order takeout. Jan’s takeout menu can be found here:
Takeout Menu
From Jan’s website: At Jan’s “We’re ‘Seafood and more’ with a great selection of dishes, all made in house from scratch. Many of our dishes are Gluten Free, including our Calamari, Fish and Chips, and others as well!”

For catering see: https://jansonthebeach.ca/catering/ or email jan@jansonthebeach.ca Jan’s on the Beach offers a full catering service.

 

 

Laura’s Coffee

Laura’s is one of Mike’s favorite coffee shops and they cater. Plus, they have a great website!

According to Mike, they have a “friendly owner and staff. It’s a great community hub,” and he says, they have “really good food and amazing baked goods. Find out more here: Laura’s Coffee Corner

 

Ritz Catering

Ritz Catering has a catering menu just for Christmas. Their meals are individually packaged and delivered to your door. There are four categories to choose from. There is Cold Christmas Sandwich Boxed Lunch, Hot Christmas Sandwich Boxed Lunch, Traditional Hot Christmas Lunch or Dinner, and the Festive Hot Christmas Lunch or Dinner. The Festive Hot Christmas Lunch or Dinner has turkey with all the trimmings, honey baked ham, veggies, mashed potatoes, buns, and fresh-baked shortbread cookies. Mmmm. I love shortbread cookies.

Coast & Country Caterers

Coast and Country Caterers have been in business since 1997. They have an exclusive Christmas menu too. One of their menus includes roast turkey, gravy and cranberry sauce, honey glazed ham, vegetarian lasagna, honey glazed carrots and beans, mashed potatoes, salads, buns, assorted desserts, and coffee and tea. There are five different menus to choose from. See Coast and Country Caterers

 

Sheila’s Craft Kitchen

At Sheila’s Craft Kitchen you can order a Holiday dinner to-go, or as they put it a “Chrismas Feast” and gift baskets and gift cards. See the photo to the right to see what’s available on the dinner menu. Visit their website here Sheila’s Craft Kitchen

 

 

 

Catering Visions

Caterings Visions says, “We are in a festive mood.” To see what Catering Visions has to offer for a catered Christmas dinner, see the photo and click here: Catering Visions

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hillcrest Bakery and Deli

At the time of writing this article, Hillcrest Bakery and Deli is sold out of Christmas Dinners! Oh well, we’ll have to make a note for next year and get our order in early. To see what you missed click here: Hillcrest Bakery and Deli 

 

 

 

 

*Orders need to be placed by a certain date at some of the locations listed above, so don’t wait. Order today!
Thanks to Deborah Janz and Shannon Perkins Dyck for the Fraser Valley catering company suggestions.
Main Photo by Jed Owen on Unsplash

Throughout this past summer Shelley Coburn, a Trustee at the Langley Board of Education partnered with local business owner Brenda-Lee Hunter from The Village Work and Play Space and organized The Village Market in Langley City. I had a visit with Shelley to get her perspective on how the market started and what it might look like in the future.

Shelley Coburn

Shelley grew up in Langley City and describes the community as “a very caring community” and as I spoke with Shelley I got the sense that The Village Market is her way of caring for the community that she grew up in and now serves as a politician.

According to Shelley, The Village Market started in response to COVID-19. She saw it as a way of giving local vendors and farmers the opportunity to sell their products because so many events and markets that they would normally attend were canceled due to the pandemic. COVID-19 has made business difficult for local vendors and farmers. Shelley is moved by the appreciation participants in The Village Market have expressed.

The market was held at 204th and Douglas Crescent in Langley City, BC and has had an interesting variety of vendors including; Koba Foods , The Saucery Fine Foods and Catering , Serenity Soaps, Coastal Glory, Forrestial Friends, Hurricane Foods, Pourhouse Collective, Blue Valley Farms, Sxwnem plant medicines, musician Bruce Andrews, and Nuez Acres

You might have noticed that The Village Market includes crafters who sometimes don’t get to participate in local farmer’s markets because the rules and regulations typically exclude them. For that reason, Shelley says she is going out of her way to include them and give them an opportunity to sell their products.

Some of the leftover fruits and vegetables from The Village Market go to Brogan‘s Diner who then provides meals to people who are homeless. Shelley is creative and looks for local nonprofits to distribute leftover food too like the Douglas Park Community School neighbourhood food bank.

Brogan's Diner
Brogan’s Diner

Shelley says that the market has a definite family feel. Her family and many of the vendor’s families participate in the market. Once in awhile local politicians show up like Peter Fassbender with his wife and grandson, Councilor Teri James, and Langley City Mayor Val van den Broek. Shelley says she appreciates the support but her favourite part is when her friends from the community show up to support the vendors and the market. She would also like to extend her thanks to folks at Discover Langley and the Downtown Langley Business Association who helped her get the market started and have been there ever since.

Shelley has a Facebook page for The Village Market in Langley City, but likes to promote the market in an old-school fashion. Nicole Longacre-O’Brien from the Langley UPS Store helps provide advertising and Shelley drops off flyers in the community a few days ahead of each event.

As Shelley looks ahead she says she may formalize the market a little bit more. In the meantime, she hasn’t set a definitive date for the next market but promises there will be another one this Fall, so stay tuned. If you’re interested in getting a table, prices start at a reasonable $30. You can contact Shelly at shelley@shelleyfcoburn.com for more information.

Article Links

Facebook: The Village Market Langley City

Email Shelley: shelley@shelleyfcoburn.com

Market location: 204th and Douglas Crescent in Langley City, BC

Koba Foods

The Saucery Fine Foods and Catering

Sxwnem plant medicines

Nuez Acres

Author: Rod Janz, Managing Editor, FV Lifestyle

Out of curiosity and an ongoing desire to support local business several members of the FV Lifestyle (FVL) team headed out to Festina Lente Estate Winery and Meadery located on 16th Avenue in South Langley for a wine tasting.

The winery is located on a 5-acre hobby farm complete with horses and, of course, beehives. To adapt to COVID restrictions, tastings are served outdoors on the beautiful grounds with tables on the porch and out on the front lawn.

We were not expecting to be served dry wines made from honey, but the selection of wines spanned from dry through to spicy and somewhat sweet. Every bottle of wine at Festina Lente has a witty story to go along with it. If you love pumpkin spiced lattes, you must try the Rustica!

We are proud to offer our premium honey wines made with local honey and fresh farm ingredients. Our wines are sophisticated. Surprisingly dry and food-friendly meads that will delight discriminating eco-conscious wine enthusiasts. Made in small batches, our wines are ever-changing with the seasons. Come by often to take advantage of our limited edition selections. ~ Festina Lente Estate Winery

Teresa Townsley Festina Lente Winery
Teresa Townsley – Queen Bee, Festina Lente Winery

Teresa Townsley
It was a beautiful August Friday afternoon for our visit. Fortunately, Teresa Townsley, the owner, or “Queen Bee” as she lists on her business card, happened to be in the winery and volunteered to do our wine tasting even though it was her day off.

As we got to know Teresa it became obvious that she has a brilliant sense of humor, an entrepreneurial spirit, and a passion for winemaking.

A Successful Year
If you follow FV Lifestyle at all, you know that one of our passions is to support local business owners, so it was great to meet Teresa and hear about the success of the Festina Lente Estate Winery and Meadery. We were pleased to hear that business is going well. Festina Lente Estate Winery is having such a good year that they are having difficulty keeping up with demand.

Festina Lente WineryHow Mead is Made
Teresa provided the FVL team with great information on how mead is made and its extensive history. We learned that the tradition of making mead goes back centuries and actually predates making wine with grapes. She informed us that the bees that produce their honey are imported from New Zealand and are a little bit more docile compared to other strains of bees. Festina Lente Estate wines are not Okanagan wines like many of the wines sold at the wineries in and around South Langley meaning that Festina Lente Estate wines are made with almost entirely locally grown ingredients.

Teresa is also proud of the fact that Festina Lente Estate wines are made with sustainable environmental practices in mind and actually are environmentally positive.

An Enjoyable Departure
The members of the FV Lifestyle squad are pretty committed and experienced grape wine drinkers, so tasting wines made of honey and fruit, or mead as it is traditionally called, was a little bit of a departure from what we are used to. We all agreed that it was enjoyable to introduce our palettes to a variety of intriguing tastes and fragrances.

Thank YouFestina Lente Winery
Thank you Teresa for the informative and delightful wine tasting experience!

To visit and get more information on Festina Lente Estate Winery see below.

Festina Lente Estate Winery
Phone: 604-510-2336
Address: 21113 16th Avenue, Langley, BC

Links
Festina Lente Website 
Festina Lente Facebook 
Festina Lente Instagram 
Festina Lente Email

In our health-conscious, environmentally concerned world, more and more people are looking for locally grown fruit, flowers, and vegetables. Today we want to give a shout out to a couple of unique Fraser Valley farms. One in South Surrey and the other in South Langley.

Kingfisher Farm Market
Kingfisher Farm Market

Kingfisher Farm Market
Kingfisher Farm Market is found at 512–1 72nd St. in South Surrey, BC. The market is open on Tuesdays from June until October 11 a.m. to 6 PM. They are located south of 8th Avenue and are close to White Rock, BC.

They encourage you to come shop for fresh veggies from their local farm in South Surrey. They have a selection of fresh sustainably grown vegetables, flowers, meat, cheese, bread, eggs, and honey. Every Tuesday they handpick their vegetables and have them fresh for you. on Tuesdays, you are invited to come and visit their chickens and cows and see how their vegetables are grown.

Who are they?
Paul and Angela Neufeld have been farming here for 15 years. They are committed to organic practices and sustainable farming. In 2011 they made the move from East Vancouver to live on this property when they were farming with A Rocha (see below).

There is actually a group of families who care for this piece of land. ”Together we are committed to growing food sustainably, caring for the ponds and forest, supporting biodiversity and reaching out to the local community.”*

A Rocha Farm and Gift Shop

A Rocha Farm and Gift Shop

The A Rocha Farm and Gift shop is part of a Rocha Canada which is an international faith-based organization that engages in scientific research, environmental education, community-based conservation projects, and sustainable agriculture.

The A Rocha Farm and Gift shop can be found at 1620 – 192 Street in Surrey BC. They are open on Tuesdays from 12 to 6 PM and Saturdays from 10 to 4 PM.

Everything A Rocha sells is “locally produced, fairly traded, or promotes an environmental ethic.” Proceeds from purchases help support A Rocha which is a non-profit.

As far as shopping for fruits and veggies they don’t necessarily have a huge selection, but what they do have is always fresh and picked right out of their garden. As fall approaches you may want to keep A Rocha in mind if you are going to be in the market for some pumpkins.

Links
Kingfisher Farm Market
A Rocha Farm and Gift Shop

Credits
Kingfisher Farm Market pics – https://www.kingfisherfarmmarket.com/ and https://www.instagram.com/kingfisherfarmmarket/

A Rocha pics https://www.instagram.com/nikkileydierphotography/ A Rocha Farm and Gift Shop and https://www.instagram.com/arocha.market/