How’s Business Yukon

Serving up kindness

Whatever we do, there is always room for a little kindness. That was the message I took away after meeting with Meg Rodger at her new eatery, Kind Café, on Hawkins Street in downtown Whitehorse.

Thirty-five years and counting

For more than the past three decades, Däna Näye Ventures has helped Yukon businesses succeed. Now, on the eve of the organization’s 35th anniversary, it has been honoured by Startup Canada for its entrepreneurial efforts. 

Nature’s Workshop

Eleven years ago, Jason Patreau was in Afghanistan with Task Force 1-08, 2nd Battalion Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry Battle Group. (PPCLI.)  He would be stationed there for nine months, not only engaging in active, combat but also humanitarian efforts such as rebuilding schools. This would be his sixth and final year with the Canadian …

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Summit Kombucha is making an ancient fermented drink Yukon’s favourite healthy beverage

Nicole Schoeneberg (left) and Hilary Seymour (right), owners of Summit Kombucha, enjoying their blueberry and basil kombucha, at their brewery Have you tried kombucha; the effervescent sweet/sour beverage? Statistics say you likely have. This ancient fermented tea drink is now the fastest-growing market in North America and experts say it could be worth $3.5 billion …

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Saved by The Caribou and wolves

Considering the Caribou RV Park at km 1403 of the Alaska Highway was established in 1974 and your humble correspondent lived in Atlin from 1977 to 1984, I must have driven right by it hundreds of times over the years without giving it a look or even a thought. I knew it was built by …

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Yukon Gardens continues to grow

Facility expansion has made winter growing possible Growing up in a small town in Saskatchewan, and during his high school days, no one knew Lorne Metropolit’s name. But they did know that he was Mac Metropolit’s son and he did good landscaping work. So, he was known as “Mac’s son” and if anyone needed a …

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Number one, with a bullet

Almost a year into its brick and mortar bagel shop in Horwood’s Mall, Whitehorse’s own bit of bagel bliss is going strong. The smell of boiling and baking bagels is immediate when you step into Horwood’s Mall. Co-owners and operators, Adrian Burrill and Alena Puskas, make bagels with their team (Hannah Warrington, Brent Gallant and …

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Tech company grows byte by byte

You’d be forgiven for thinking Triniti Technology only sells cell phone cases. Sylvio Lin, general manager for the Whitehorse-based company, knows that’s what it looks like from the outside.  “Most people think we just sell electronics,” said Lin. “They have no idea what else we do in terms of repair and servicing.” Beyond the cell …

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Managing avalanche terrain

Eirik Sharp, owner and operator of The Sharp End: Mountain Adventures, with his extensive avalanche background, is bringing change to how the Yukon manages avalanche terrain.

Revolutionizing endurance training

“We’re just at the cusp of changing an entire sport, and it’s coming out of a town of 23-thousand people. It’s incredible where we’ve got to,” said Alastair Smith, co founder of Proskida. Current performance-monitoring technology that’s widely available in the sport doesn’t tell you how much you’re producing; it just tells you how much …

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Fairweather Skis

The small town of Haines, Alaska, lies near 72 miles of glacier terrain and 15,000 feet below the icy summit of Mount Fairweather, which is the namesake of Fairweather Ski Works. Here is where a small hobbyist’s dream has become synonymous with the ski industry in southeast Alaska. Graham Kraft, 33 (from British Columbia), was …

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The Deli

Fifty years of meat, sausage and community

The Deli, as it is fondly nicknamed by so many, is a local icon to most Yukoners (not just those in Whitehorse), as well as to many travellers from around the world. (This tribute was written to help celebrate its 50th Anniversary on December 14, 2018.)

Expanding the Elements

When you walk into the newly renovated Elements Hair Studio and Day Spa, you wouldn’t know that its location was formerly a swimming pool. You might even forget that you are in Whitehorse. Whitehorse’s only true day spa moved into its new space in the Gold Rush Best Western Hotel in February, expanding its size …

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Keeping the trains on track

The famous White Pass & Yukon Route (WP&YR) Railway is a busy and beautiful journey through the White Pass of Alaska and the Yukon. Every year, as Alaska and the Yukon emerge from winter, so does the work to make sure these trains can carry tourists safely through avalanche paths and safely along the railway. …

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Lettuce off the grid

Food security is an ongoing concern for northerners, as remote communities as well as Whitehorse struggle with access to reliable and affordable produce from southern suppliers. Executives at the Yukon-based power company Solvest Inc. think they’ve found a solution. The company is in the pilot phase of a project that aims to provide an off-the-grid …

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Pelvic floor – Sorry, why are we talking about this?

If I told you it is possible to move your tailbone by contracting your pelvic muscles, would you believe me? Indeed, not many people know about the existence of these muscles in the pelvis called “the pelvic floor.” To contract your pelvic floor, imagine picking up a ping pong ball with your anus (or with …

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Ford has a better idea

Jasmine Bill (left), Charles Chief, Jacquie Shorty, and Alexander Gatensby receive Whitehorse Motors’ August contribution to the KDFN Youth Advisory Council from Tina Woodland In the old days, it was just carburetors. Now, 50 years later, everything has changed, according to Tina Woodland, owner of Whitehorse Motors. Cars are computerized, the dealership has moved locations and …

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Handmade with passion

Take a drive south of Whitehorse, using the mountain range and tall pines as your guide, you will find yourself in the lovely community of Carcross. In this little hub works a very talented jeweller, Shelley MacDonald.

Changing northern skylines: Mary Ellen Read and the art of collaboration

I meet the architect Mary Ellen Read at the cocktail bar Woodcutter’s Blanket in Whitehorse. With a grin she guides me around the windy corner to show me a pit, where you can see the log building’s basement’s concrete exterior, a face normally covered by earth. She checks with James Maltby, the owner of the Woodcutter’s, …

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All she is saying is ‘Give Feet a Chance’

These feet were made for walking. It’s not just a song; it’s the basis for a lot of Jeddie Russell’s work at WalkOn Foot Care, Whitehorse’s new foot care clinic located in the log skyscraper.

Helping the community climb to new heights

Chris Gishler, owner and operator of Equinox Adventures, has spent the last 15 years building and developing his outdoor adventure and education company as the Yukon has continued to grow. Back in 1999, Gishler arrived to Whitehorse in preparation for a Mount Logan trip in Kluane National Park, only to discover plane issues, which led …

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Yukon built entrepreneurs

Third generation, born-and-raised Yukoners, brothers Myles, 26 and Tanner Hougen, 24 have begun their own journey into the Yukon entrepreneurial market.

An interview with Kayla Morrison

When you decide to pursue baking as a career, there’s only so far you can go up before the only option is opening up your own place.

Glass of wine with that pedicure?

Head to Toe is the first ever salon to offer a bar service to their customers, including mimosas, house wines, scotch, coffee and baileys, and import and local beer.

Go North, Young Printers

Located at 204 Strickland St., the Arctic Star Printing building has been a part of the downtown Whitehorse scenery since 1983. Now they’ve got a new location. The company acquired Inkspirationz at 120 Platinum Road in July, and as of September 11, the two companies are now operating from the same workspace. “It will allow …

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Filling the Void

For Patrick Jackson, the owner and operator of Changing Gear, it seems like only yesterday that he moved from Vancouver up to the Yukon, but 20 years later he’s still here using his experience and passion to run a successful store. Jackson started the sporting goods consignment store Changing Gear just over a year ago …

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A new place to knit

Jackie Yaklin is a true knitter. If you see her at the dentist office, she likely has knitting needles in her hands conjuring up something warm for someone. “It is like an obsession and I seem to be really obsessed with starting projects,” she admits. “I have four projects going on right now.” Yaklin likes …

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Street Party Sound

If a musical shindig at the Old Fire Hall this Saturday puts you in mind of a New Orleans street party, Ryan McNally won’t be the least bit disappointed. The event is intended to introduce Yukon audiences to the Whitehorse singer-songwriter’s newest CD, Steppin’ Down South. The bulk of the album consists of nine tunes …

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The Art of Eating

Suppose you are a French entrepreneur, and you are looking for a new business idea to develop in Whitehorse. What do you do ?   For a safe bet, you stick to the old saying “Do what you know.” Entrepreneur and epicurean Sylvain Belmondo did just that. After many months in the making, the Gourmet …

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Bowling is back

In the popular bowling movie Kingpin the term “munsoned” is coined by the film’s writers Peter and Bobby Farrelly to describe being up a creek without a paddle, essentially being left for dead. For the Mad Trapper Alleys in Riverdale that seemed to be its fate after closing its doors in May. But now the …

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Tastes of Home

Conquering exotic culinary worlds is exhilarating, but the dispiriting lack of some foods can make home feel very far away, indeed. For some people, a curious thing may happen once they relocate. They may develop a taste for things they wouldn’t have considered before. The local food will open myriad sensations. But for others, it’s …

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Homegrown Business

Proud Yukoners want to shop Yukon – but sometimes it feels hard to do that. With so many of our goods and services being provided by companies on the Outside, it often feels like we’ve got no choice but to shell out to the big boys. For those who prefer to shop in their own backyard, however, …

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RVing in the YT

Earlier this year, at the Toronto Interior Design show, the Cubitat was introduced. This lifestyle cube is 10’ x 10’ and features a bed, bathroom, kitchen and television. All you need to do is hook up water and power and you have yourself a compact living space. Smaller living spaces have become increasingly popular. Now …

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Artists Disguised as Carpenters

Ogilvie General Contracting is a small company; Graydon Keenan is it. And he and his long time friend Jona Barr took his first big project together. It wasn’t just any job. This was for their friend Elijah Stick’s mom, Jan. “I knew I wanted to make it special for Jan,” he says. “She’s like family …

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Bailey’s

It may not be a bar where everybody knows your name, but they sure as heck have seen you shoveling your driveway. It’s a neighbourhood pub. Its busiest nights are between Monday and Friday as Porter Creek welcomes home its residents after a long day of work. And Bailey’s Pub and Grill may not be …

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Less Experience Could Mean More Opportunity

The labour market. It’s an issue that has been discussed to no end and we still haven’t reached a solution. Where do we find staff for our tourism businesses? Of course, we’ve been presented with numerous options from increasing wages to offering more benefits and from hiring retirees to searching the foreign labour pool for …

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Generation ‘why-not’

Those of us in the workforce who are over the age of 30 have one thing in common: we have nothing in common with those under 30. Those elements that are true in this sweeping generalization (crafted solely to offer a punchy lead) are a pity: we “old folks” should have more in common with …

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