Chinese snow sculptures dazzle Kirkland residents during ongoing pandemic

A Kirkland homeowner’s dazzling snow sculptures have become the talk of the town, attracting curious onlookers and receiving a lot of attention on social media. Global’s Brayden Jagger Haines brings us the story.

A three-meter tall military general and curvy, painted traditional vases — all made from snow — are dazzling Kirkland residents.

Artist Shufeng Zhang has turned his snow covered front lawn into a curated showcase of Chinese culture.

“I love art and I love Sculptures,” Zhang said.

The Kirkland resident has been busy during the winter months with his pandemic project, hand carving intricate snow statues.

Originally from Beijing China, Zhang says over the last two years he has been honing his carving skills, learning along the way. Using only household items such as a pie server and a cheese grater, Zhang can turn a block of snow into a piece of art.

One of the most notable pieces in his collection is a spear-wielding Guan Yu, a famous ancient Chinese military general.


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Zhang says each of his peices hold a meaning. Guan Yu represents strength and loyalty. The coloured two meter tall vases standing in his driveway symbolize peace and safety. Zhang says these are all things that are needed to get through this ongoing pandemic.

“I believe they can keep me safe, and Guan Yu can bless me,” Zhang said.

He hopes his therapeutic work will also spread a bit of levity within the community.

Zhang’s work has gained a lot of attention online, and neighbours have been braving the snowy blizzards to see the sculptures in person.

“I feel almost back in China,” Herbert Chang said. “It’s nice to see these sculptures in the neighbourhood.”

Resident Susan Zimmerman and her friends say they went out of their way to see the progress of the outdoor gallery.

“Its impressive. It really is. They did a great job, ” Zimmerman said.

“Were going to continue walking everyday and look out for more,” resident Sattie Dookoo said.

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It takes Zhang between two and three days to construct the carvings. He says he isn’t done yet. With the latest dumping of snow, more are on the way.

“I will do it everyday. I think this year I will make more than ten sculptures,” Zhang said.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

25 with COVID-19 in Guelph hospital, 48 staff off work: report

Health Canada’s approval of Pfizer’s oral anti-viral treatment is expected to make a big difference in the future fight against COVID-19. But early warnings are coming that it’s no replacement for vaccines and won’t make a significant impact for months. Matthew Bingley reports.

Guelph General is treating 25 patients with COVID-19, says the latest Waterloo Wellington COVID report.

It shows that Guelph General Hospital’s ICU bed capacity is at 80 per cent, while its acute care occupancy is at 98 per cent. This includes both COVID and non-COVID patients.

The report also shows that 48 out of 1,994 staff are off work due to COVID-19 protocols, having either tested positive for the virus or are isolating at home due to being considered a high-risk contact.

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Across Waterloo Region, Guelph and Wellington County, the report shows there are 166 COVID hospitalizations and over 500 staff off work.

“The number of patients requiring care continues to outpace our resources,” Waterloo Wellington hospital regional lead, Lee Fairclough said.

“You need only look in the faces of the staff and patients in our hospitals including those in stretchers lining our hallways, to understand the tremendous pressures we are facing. From this vantage point, we see that Omicron is serious and is not through with us yet.”

Public health reported 57 new confirmed COVID-19 cases in Guelph on Wednesday, raising its total case count to 8,433 during the pandemic. However, due to recent testing eligibility changes, the provincial government says case numbers are an underestimation of the true spread of the virus in the community.

Active cases reached 502 and the city’s total fatal cases stand at 47. Another 66 cases are considered resolved, raising the total resolved cases to 7,884. There are 10 ongoing outbreaks across the city, including two at the Homewood Health Centre with 29 cases between staff and patients.

Public health data shows 83.7 per cent of eligible residents in Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph — those turning five or older — are considered fully vaccinated, while 89 per cent have received at least one vaccine dose.

In Guelph, 85.8 per cent of all eligible residents are fully vaccinated and 91.2 per cent are partially vaccinated, while in Wellington County, 82.5 per cent are fully vaccinated and 87.7 per cent have received one dose.

So far this week, about 3,400 vaccines have been administered in the region, with most being third-dose booster shots.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Winnipeg man found injured in apartment is city's first homicide of 2022

The Winnipeg Police Homicide Unit is investigating after a man who was found in his apartment injured later died in hospital.

On Jan. 17. at 7:15 p.m. police say they responded to a report of suspicious circumstances in downtown Winnipeg.

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This led them to an apartment in the 800 block of Main Street where they found a 36-year-old man.

The man was seriously injured and was given emergency medical care before he was taken to hospital where he later died.

Police have identified the victim as Joseph Matthew Myran from Winnipeg.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Homicide Unit 204-986-6508 or Crime Stoppers 204-786-TIPS

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Snowshoer rescued from Kelowna Nordic Trail system

The benefits of being well prepared were on full display Sunday as the Central Okanagan search and rescue team embarked on its second call of the year.

With a  snowmobile team and two toboggans, they went to help a snowshoer who injured his ankle on the SnowView trail in the Kelowna Nordic Trail system and was unable to walk.

COSAR officials said he was with two other snowshoers, and their two dogs, and they were able to keep warm with a small fire, while rescuers made the long journey for the rescue.

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“It was textbook,” SAR manager Brian Stainsby said in a press release. “The subject was well prepared, they lit a fire and were able to tell us their exact location.”

Rescuers rode seven kilometers on the Nordic trails before they ditched their snowmobiles and pulled the sled another kilometre to the injured subject, COSAR said in a press release.

“A rope system was needed on the way back due to the steep terrain,” COSAR added.

READ MORE: Central Okanagan Search and Rescue says 2020 was its busiest year on record

Once back at the trailhead, the man’s companions took him to Kelowna General Hospital for treatment.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Kingston Police seeking suspects in alleged theft of tires

Kingston Police are asking for the public’s assistance in locating two men they say are responsible for a recent theft of tires.

On Christmas Day, two men were caught by the security cameras at the Kingston Area Recycling Centre on Lappan’s Lane.

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On the footage, police say, the men entered the site through a hole in the fence.

The men allegedly proceeded to remove tires from a portable trailer but did not remove them from the property until they returned at 6:30 p.m. that evening.

By 7:00 p.m. a white pickup truck was waiting for the men, and security footage shows them loading the tires into the truck and leaving the area.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Det. Const. Andrew Wilby of Kingston Police.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Man charged after allegedly exposing himself to 13-year-old girl on Toronto streetcar

Toronto police say a 38-year-old man is facing charges after he allegedly exposed himself to a young teenager on a Toronto streetcar.

Police said a 13-year-old girl was riding the Bathurst streetcar going northbound on Tuesday evening when a stranger approached her.

Investigators allege the man exposed himself to her and motioned for her to touch him.

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The young girl then activated the passenger assistance alarm, police said.

Graydon Metcalfe was arrested. He is charged with indecent exposure to a person under the age of 16 and invitation to sexual touch made to a person under the age of 16.

He is scheduled to appear in court on Wednesday.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

COVID-19: Go-Vaxx mobile vaccination clinic to return to Haliburton County with 3 stops

Ontario’s GO-VAXX mobile vaccination clinic is making three stops in Haliburton County in the coming weeks, the Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit announced Wednesday.

The retrofitted GO bus will provide first, second and boosters doses of COVID-19 vaccinations to any eligible residents, including doses for children ages 5-11. Moderna will be provided to individuals 30 and older, unless they have a documented allergy to Moderna.

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All appointments must be booked in advance through the Provincial Booking System or by calling the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre at 1-833-943-3900. Appointments can be booked starting at 8 a.m. the day before the clinic.

Clinics will run from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.:

  • Saturday, Jan. 29 : A.J. LaRue Arena, 728 Mountain St., in Haliburton
  • Saturday, Feb. 5: Lloyd Watson Community Centre, 2249 Loop Rd., in Wilberforce
  • Saturday Feb. 12: A.J. LaRue Arena in Haliburton

“Being fully vaccinated with a booster dose has proven to be effective in preventing severe illness and hospitalization against the Omicron variant,” said Doreen Boville, health promoter with the health unit. “To ensure anyone needing a vaccine can get one, appointments are necessary for a smooth rollout.”

Individuals are asked to bring their Ontario health card. If you do not have a health card or your health card is expired, bring another form of government photo ID such as a driver’s license, passport, Status card, or birth certificate.

The health unit has appointments available at COVID-19 vaccination clinics being held throughout the region. A list of dates and times is available on the health unit’s Residents are also encouraged to check with local pharmacies or their primary health care providers for more opportunities to get vaccinated.

As of Tuesday afternoon, the health unit reported 822 active cases within its jurisdiction including 35 in Haliburton County.



© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Gaspard Ulliel, French actor, dead at 37 after Alps ski accident

French actor Gaspard Ulliel, known for Chanel perfume ads and portraying fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent in a 2014 biopic, has died at 37 following a ski accident in the Alps, French media reported on Wednesday.

Ulliel, who won a French Cesar award for best actor for his role in It’s Only the End of the World, a film by Canadian director Xavier Dolan in 2017, was the face of the Bleu de Chanel men’s fragrance.

“French cinema is losing a huge talent, full of charm and energy,” French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire posted on Twitter.

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Ulliel portrayed the young Hannibal Lecter in 2007’s Hannibal Rising and Saint Laurent in the 2014 biopic Saint Laurent. He is also in the upcoming Marvel series Moon Knight.

An investigation is under way into Tuesday’s accident in La Rosière ski area in the Savoie region, according to the Savoie prosecutor’s office.

Ulliel was in the hospital receiving care early Wednesday before he died, the prosecutor’s office said. Local broadcaster France Bleu said, at the time, that he was in “serious” condition with a skull injury.

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Ulliel’s agents did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Police and the prosecutor’s office would not divulge details of the accident. France Bleu said Ulliel apparently collided with another skier at a crossing point on the slopes, and the other skier was not hospitalized.

The mountain police service serving the site of the accident said it has been organizing five or six rescues per day in recent days as the snow has hardened.

— With files from Reuters

© 2022 The Canadian Press

Man charged with arson in Coldstream house fire

A 38-year-old man has been charged in connection with a fire that destroyed a Coldstream home.

The fire destroyed a home on Hawthorne Place in Coldstream on Jan. 14 at around 7 p.m. Vernon North Okanagan RCMP and the Coldstream Fire Department responded.

While the house was destroyed, residents were uninjured.

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“Early findings indicated the fire to be suspicious and information collected as the investigation progressed led police to believe it was deliberately set,” RCMP said in a press release.

“Later that evening, at approximately 9:30 p.m., police arrested a suspect in relation to the fire.”

Matthew Eric Mason, 38, was charged with one count of arson with disregard for human life and one count of failing to comply with a release order.


Mason remains in custody. His next court appearance is Thursday.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Special weather statement issued for Guelph, Waterloo Region

Environment Canada has issued a special weather statement for Guelph, Waterloo Region and Wellington County ahead of the afternoon commute on Wednesday.

The agency says that it will warm up across the southern portion of the province Wednesday, reaching highs in the mid-single digits.

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But things will change later this afternoon when a cold front will reach the area, causing temperatures to quickly drop below the freezing mark.

Environment Canada says this could lead to icy conditions on highways and roads as well as walkways and parking lots.

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According to Environment Canada, the Kitchener forecast will reach a high of around 2 C at around 11 a.m. before the temperature will begin to fall, reaching -5 C with a chance of flurries by 6 p.m.

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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