Tag Archives: Squirrel Cove General Store

Cortes Island Slowly Reopening

There were four tables when Mansons Friday Market reopened, on May 29th. Last week there were seventeen. They spilled outside the hall and throughout much of the parking lot. There were a lot of new faces: some covered by masks, but mostly not. This was only one of many examples of Cortes Island slowly reopening.

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Cortes Island Stores Granted Assured Loading

For Curt Cunningham, of the Squirrel Cove General Store, it means not having to leave at 5 AM to ensure he can board the first ferry leaving Cortes Island on Monday mornings. He can stay in bed for another two hours. Cunningham will no longer worry about the consequences of being forced to wait for another sailing on the trip home. (Three loads of ice cream melted in the ferry parking lot last year.) There will be no more nights when he is forced to sleep on Quadra, or Campbell River, because there was no room for his truck on the last ferry. He will not have to ask an employee to open the store in the morning. BC Ferries granted assured loading to Cortes Island’s commercial food trucks.

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Cortes Island’s Food Sector Resuming Services

The Floathouse Restaurant started serving customers at tables a few days ago. While this has changed, people can still sit at tables. The Co-op Cafe has reopened for take-out, albeit only on Wednesdays and Fridays. Squirrel Cove’s Flying Squirrel could start up within a month. Cortes Island’s food sector is slowly resuming services. 

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Where will Cortesians shop after COVID?

When much of the island went into self distancing, many who normally purchase their groceries in Campbell River started frequenting local stores. The Cortes Natural Food Co-op experienced a 30% increase during March and April. Bertha Jeffery, from the Cortes Market, told the second Cortes Island virtual conference, “Our sales are equivalent to the summer and we have half the staff.” That was on March 25. Now the province is starting to return to normal. Where will Cortesians shop after COVID?

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Developing Cortes Island Food Security

Representatives from two of the island’s better known organizations were asked to speak at the May 5, 2020, Cortes Island Virtual Community Meeting. Loni Taylor is one of the Directors of the Cortes Community Economic Development Association (CCEDA); Tamara McPhail is the Executive Director of Linnaea Farm. Director Anderson asked how their organizations are developing Cortes Island food security.

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