Ice Chips & Canoe Quips

Let’s keep active together, apart!

The township of Assiginack has once again shown itself to provide new and interesting activities to their citizens! In this case anyone with a link to their Facebook page could have benefitted from their latest endeavour. They invited Given Cortes, fitness aficionado and registered massage therapist to give a talk on Facebook Live on how everyone can add more movement into their regular day’s activities with little to no equipment required. During our COVID quarantines, one of Given’s mantras was “motion is the lotion” and “movement is medicine” meaning that keeping active and being in motion more can be like a soothing lotion, and a medicinal effect on the body and mind. 

The video is still available on the Township’s Facebook feed and you can watch or re-watch at your own leisure. Given gives a lot of great advice for people of all ages and abilities. He is big on functional movement that will help people perform regular tasks that might sometimes lead to injury. He also stresses making your movement fun. One simple example is to simply tuck socks into your waste-band and then by moving your hip and torso enough to make them bounce. He says you don’t have to be a professional belly dancer and there is no need to be embarrassed in the privacy of your own home.

Finally, he gives viewers a positive send-off message regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. He repeats that, “we are all in this together” and “we will come out the other side” and we all just need to stay vigilant and keep fighting. If you know of individuals or groups who are making sure they are staying active and healthy in these difficult time please drop me a note a 

Where are they now?

From the Larry Leblanc archive! The Grass keeps getting “Greener.” We’re talking hockey not lawns. Hockey aficionados on Manitoulin Island have been thrilled for many years by the stylish efforts of the local legend Green family of Little Current. When I moved to Manitoulin in the early ‘70s the exploits of Roy “Squirt” Green were well known. Squirt played for the Little Current squad in the erstwhile Island Senior League. His playmaking and goal-scoring were second to none. 

Shortly after came the second “Squirt,” son Jeff. Squirty No. 2 didn’t disappoint. From the earliest years he could outplay, outscore and out-finesse his peer group. Along came the Panthers organization rep association for the best players from the entire Island. Jeff had an outstanding career with the Panthers culminating with an organization record in his last midget year. Centering the top line in the Nickel District League Squirt No. 2 notched an incredible 126 points playing on a line with Manitowaning’s Matt Case and Mindemoya’s Scott Leblanc (who had 88 and 99 points) for an association record 313 points for a forward line. The following year Jeff and Scott suited up for the NOJHL Jr A team in Espanola, the Screaming Eagles. “Greener” was an immediate success with the newly born team. He quickly became the top scorer of the team and on the top 10 in the entire League. He became well known quickly. On the first Espanola game in Timmins, Jeff was the cover story on their game program followed by a long bio in the magazine itself. 

Currently Jeff continues to score and dazzle on the Sault St Marie’s Men’s League while doing some coaching in the Sault Major Hockey Association. But the Green beat goes on as son Lucas skates for the Soo Major Pee Wee AA Greyhounds This past season saw him and his teammates reach a new high. These Greyhounds won the triple crown of peewee hockey winning the Nickel District League title, the NOHA championship and picking up the silver at the All-Ontarios (OHF). Jeff topped that off by being the top scorer in the OHF tourney as well as earning the MVP award for the entire tournament. Can the “grass” get any “Greener?”

Islander drafted!

Congratulations to Aundeck Omni Kaning First Nation’s Samuel Assinewai. The young hockey phenom and his family have done everything to give Samuel a chance to take his hockey to the next level. One of the big sacrifices they made, included moving the family so Sam could play with the Detroit Compuware Bantams in the High Performance Hockey League, one of the top America development leagues for up-and-coming prospects. 

Before that, Samuel began his hockey career on Manitoulin Island and then played for the Nickel City Sons Bantam AAA Sons in Sudbury. With that long pathway and a lot of hard work got him noticed by the Ontario Hockey League’s scouts. At the recent OHL draft, Samuel was picked up by the Flint, Michigan Firebirds in the 13th round and 256th player overall selected. 

In the Sudbury Star, Sam was quoted as saying that his strengths would most likely focus on his skating and playmaking abilities. Not yet 16, the now 5’11’ 155-pounder will still be growing and becoming an even more powerful, power forward. Congratulations, Samuel!

A good sport is good for sports.