2015 Past Speakers & Social Meetings
Scroll down to summaries of past events

This page showcases our past events and speakers. Our events and free public meetings have been a great success, and have conveyed a variety of valuable information to many participants as well as offering an opportunity to build personal acquaintances. The speakers and event leaders have given their time and talent to hundreds of people since we began the series. Thank you all!

Click on their names or just scroll down to see a brief summary of these events:

Shining Waters marine

Thank you to our sponsor Shining Waters Marine for providing the venue and services for our Speakers Series.

Thank you to the following venues for providing meeting space in the past:

The Black Point Fire Hall
Sobeys, Upper Tantallon
St. Margaret Sailing Club
Atlantic Superstore, Upper Tantallon
St. Luke’s Church


Thursday, June 23, 2016 at Shining Waters Marina
BBQ & Potluck, and Boat Launching

Seniors Association Potluck Seniors Association Potluck Seniors Association Potluck Seniors Association Potluck Seniors Association Potluck

Click on Boat Launch picture to view photo gallery of the Boat Building Project.


Thursday, May 19, 2016 at Shining Waters Marina
“Old St. Margaret’s Bay”

Seniors Association Speaker Seniors Association Speaker Seniors Association Speaker

Gary Meade, former municipal councilor, long-time resident, and local history buff shared stories, books, genealogy charts, and photographs of St. Margaret’s Bay’s past.

Thursday, April 21, 2016 at Shining Waters Marina
“A History of Whaling in Eastern Canada” and “Prescription Drug Costs”

Seniors Association SpeakerDr. Brenna McLeod (Frasier) presented “A History of Whaling in Eastern Canada”. Brenna McLeod is a biologist whose research has primarily focused on the assessment of ancient and contemporary DNA of a variety of marine mammals with the aim to better understand species history and recovery. Her work has also included the study of other animals, including bats and the Sable Island horses. Brenna is currently a research associate with the Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History and the Frasier Lab of Molecular Biology and Evolution at Saint Mary’s University. She is also a Researcher/Educator with the Canadian Whale Institute (CWI), a non-profit organization.


Seniors Meeting Presenter



Member Dr. Philip Welch will talk about “What do your drug prescriptions really cost and what can you do about it?”. Dr. Welch is a medical graduate from the University of Edinburgh. He was awarded a Research Fellowship at John Hopkins earning a Ph.D. in Human Genetics. He was the first medical geneticist to locate in Atlantic Canada and initiated a Cytogenetics Laboratory in the IWK Children’s Hospital where he served as Director for over 20 years. He is the recipient of the Founders Award for Excellence in Medical Genetics from the Canadian College of Medical Geneticists.

Seniors Association SpeakerThursday, March 17, 2016 at Shining Waters Marina
“Your Home is a Toxic Dump”

Member Pauline MacDonald gave a talk entitled “Your Home is a Toxic Dump”. We viewed a very informative video from CBC Marketplace about the ingredients in everyday products in our homes that could harm us, the environment, and wildlife.
At 3:00 p.m., The Seniors Association conducted its 8th Annual General Meeting.

Seniors Association Meeting

Thursday, February 18, 2016 at Shining Waters Marina
“Protect Yourself from Scams”

Bay Seniors Program

Detective Constable Desmond Lambert of the Integrated Financial Unit HRP/RCMP presented tips on how to protect yourself from scams. He answered lots of questions from the audience and made reference to a Canadian publication on the subject, which is now posted on our website.

Bay Seniors Program

Bay Seniors Program


The Little Black Book of Scams is a publication of the Competition Bureau Canada. Click the image or title to download or view the 36-page (8.5MB) booklet. Contents include:

Little Black Book of Scams

  • Lotteries, sweepstakes and contests
  • Pyramid schemes
  • Money transfer requests
  • Internet scams
  • Mobile phone scams
  • Health and medical scams
  • Emergency scams
  • Dating and romance scams
  • Charity scams
  • Job and employment scams
  • Small business scams
  • Service scams
  • Handy hints to protect yourself
  • What to do if you get scammed!

Bay Seniors ProgramThursday, January 21, 2016 at Shining Waters Marina
“Bay Refugee Project”

Allan King, a retired teacher from Sir John A. MacDonald High School, spoke about the history of the Arab World and Syria, and showed many pictures of his travels and family visits to the area. Allan’s daughter was in the Foreign Service and was in Syria for two years. He slao provided an update on the Bay Refugee Project.

Bay Seniors Program

Thursday, December 10, 2015 at Shining Waters Marina
“Holiday Party”

Bay Seniors Program Bay Seniors Program Bay Seniors Program The 2015 Holiday Party was well attended and declared by many as a huge success, largely because of the local musical group the Cardinal Points.

Bay Seniors ProgramMany Christmas Carols and holiday tunes were performed including a humourous solo from an audience member about an ‘exploding turkey’.

Bay Seniors Program The holiday treats and decorations were outstanding as usual. Each table produced a decorated snowman, which was given to the person with the birthday closest to Christmas.

Bay Seniors Program

We also heard a few stories about Christmas family traditions and memories including a special illustrated carol book and Christmas Tree candle holders.

SASMB Monthly Meeting Thursday, November 19, 2015 at Shining Waters Marinabr/>”Birds: Indicators of a Healthy Habitat”

Suzanne Borkowski  talked to the group about what constitutes a healthy habitat, what birds can tell us about our environment, how to make our properties more bird friendly, and some tips on how to identify what you see. SASMB Monthly MeetingShe showed many images of birds (e.g. Cedar Waxwing shown on the right) that are found in the area, and how they affect and are effected by changes in our environment. Birds spread seeds, eat insects, and are very sensitive to levels of oxygen (e.g. “canary in the coal mine”) – hence are most often found around trees, bushes, grasses, and gardens.

Suzanne joined the NS Bird Society in 2001 and was asked to serve on the Executive in 2002 as the Society’s Field Trip Coordinator, a position she held for eight years. SASMB Monthly Meeting During that time she also served as the Society’s President from 2004-2008. She has led numerous field trips, and co-led the January Sewer Stroll (a grand tour around Halifax Harbour) with Bob McDonald for ten years. She still leads a spring trip: Historic Hants County, (so-called because it’s one of the longest running trips in the Bird Society) every Victoria Day.


Prior to Suzanne’s presentation, Ms. Donna McInnis gave us a short report on the Falls Prevention Symposium, which she attended on behalf of the Seniors Association. More information on our Health webpage.


Thursday, October 22, 2015 at Shining Waters Marina
“Community Health Teams”

Capital Health Community Health TeamsNova Scotia’s Community Health Teams are expanding wellness programs and wellness navigation services in our St. Margaret’s Bay area. Melissa Perry and Christina McDonald described many programs which offer residents and seniors helpful preventive health care.

Understanding Pain, Heart Healthy Living, Food Fads – Fact or Fiction, Building Better Sleep, Weight Management, Pre-diabetes – and many more information sessions are offered repeatedly in various St. Margaret’s Bay, Bedford, Lakeside and Clayton Park locations. For a full list please visit www.communityhealthteams.ca and click on “Sign Up for Programs”. ALL Capital Health’s wellness programs are FREE!

Capital Health Community Health Teams Another popular service is the “Personal Wellness Profile”. On a Thursday morning you complete a lifestyle survey and have your cholesterol, blood sugar, blood pressure, body fat and waist circumference measured. Medical professionals review all your results in confidence and give you a personalized report on how you are doing in 9 health areas and your health age. Call 902-460-4556 for more information and to register. Due to the specialized medical testing performed the Personal Wellness Profile is done at one location Suite 105 at 6080 Young Street (Young Tower).

Volunteers at the Seniors Information Centre 902-820-3334 can help you find dates and locations for any of these wellness sessions near you. More local sessions are being organized in 2016.

Thursday, September 17, 2015 at Shining Waters Marina
“Neighbours Helping Neighbours”

Once again, Shining Waters Marina provided an inspiring backdrop  for a public discussion on forming networks of contact people for Bay Seniors. Masterfully introduced by Kathy Gamache from the Aspotogan Heritage Trust, four presenters from the Tantallon Library (Janet Harrison), the Silver Economy Engagement Network (Dayle Eschelby), the Community Health Board (Cathy Leslie), and the Mahone Bay Centre ( Leslie Taylor) briefly described services and experiences related to four major themes:  1) Better resources, amenities and services;  2) Ways for information to be passed along to those who would not otherwise get it; 3) Recruiting contact persons for those who are not connected in case of emergency; 4) Connect with people who are socially isolated. A lively question period and group discussions followed the presentations. The gathering ended on a note of optimism. It is clear that Bay seniors, as a group, have the imagination, the will and, increasingly,  the resources, to shape a community where everyone feels at home, accepted and supported.

BaySeniors Program BaySeniors Program



Thursday, June 18, 2015 at Shining Waters Marina
Jamaican Potluck

BaySeniors Jamaican Potluck BaySeniors Jamaican PotluckIt was time to forget those serious speakers’ subjects and that miserable winter of 2014-2015, and to let our hair down and enjoy each others’ company while relaxing at one of our popular Potluck Luncheons, this time with a Jamaican theme – food, a historical and cultural display, music, and dress.

BaySeniors Jamaican Potluck BaySeniors Jamaican Potluck

Thursday, May 21, 2015 at Shining Waters Marina
Sable Island Update by Zoe Lucas

Sable Island Horses Zoe Lucas has been working on Sable Island for over 40-years. Her long-term projects have included research on the Sable Island horses, beach surveys for oiled seabirds and stranded cetaceans, and biodiversity studies (mosses, lichens, fungi, and invertebrates). The results of research programs have been published in peer-reviewed scientific journals, as well as in newsletters and magazines.

Zoe LucasIn 2004, she became a Research Associate with the Nova Scotia Museum. Nowadays, she spends about six to eight months per year on the island, returning to the mainland for meetings and work with project collaborators, and to give presentations for public interest groups, schools, and youth organizations. Zoe Lucas

Since 2006, she has worked with the Green Horse Society and the Ecology Action Centre in Halifax to organize a series of annual public meetings about Sable Island. She was awarded an Honorary Doctorate degree by Dalhousie University in 2008.

Thursday, April 16, 2015 at Shining Waters Marina
“Are You Readyto help shape the future for seniors?” Workshop

At the April 16th meeting, SASMB Members had the opportunity to reflect on the future plans for the Association. The agenda included:

  1. HISTORY – John McKee
  2. ARE YOU READY TO HELP SHAPE THE FUTURE FOR SENIORS? (Table Discussion & Feedback to Large Group)

By-laws, 2014:

  • To provide housing accommodation options and assistance
  • To research and represent the interests of seniors
  • To promote and participate in the development of wellness living

A. How may we influence the future of HOUSING in our area?

B. Is WELLNESS LIVING considered a priority among seniors? How may we continue to be a positive influence?

C. The INFORMATION CENTRE and WEBSITE support many in our area and VOLUNTEERS are the heart of our Association. How do you envision the future development of these services and involvement of additional volunteers?

Thursday, March 26, 2015 at Shining Waters Marine
ElderDog Canada, Dr. Ardra Cole

BaySeniors Speaker BaySeniors Meeting
BaySeniors SpeakerDr. Ardra Cole, founder of ElderDog Canada Inc. presented an interesting session about how aging dogs and aging people help each other.

ElderDog is a national, community-based, non-profit organization with a mission to:

  • Assist and support older adults in the care and well-being of their canine companions;
  • Provide care and companionship for older dogs whose lives have been disrupted due to illness, relocation or death of a human companion;
  • Educate about the human-animal bond in general and the significant role of companion animals in the health and well-being of seniors; and,
  • Honour life and loss of canine companions through consolation and commemoration.

Thursday, February 26, 2015 at Shining Waters Marine
Community Links Skit – Seniors Gambling

A light-hearted skit about Seniors and Gambling was put on by actors from Community Links.

Community Links is in Phase III of its Seniors and Gambling Project. They travel to different parts of the Province to offer presentations to seniors clubs and community groups. The presentations include a dramatic skit put on by volunteer actors about how friends might approach someone with a gambling problem.

Bay Seniors Program
Bay Seniors Program Bay Seniors Program
Actors (L to R): Patsy (played by Judy), Maggie (played by Muriel) and Jim (played by Eric) with Project Coordinator Hida Gymz.

No stand is taken for or against gambling, which is a safe leisure activity for many. However, 180,000 Nova Scotians report that they know someone who is experiencing harm from gambling.

Bay Seniors Program


Thursday, January 15, 2015 at Shining Waters Marine
RCMP and Safety Services NS – Safe Winter Driving and “When to hang up the keys”

Bay Seniors Program

Michael Tops (L) Safety Service NS and Jim Shields (R) from the RCMP presented on the topics of safe winter driving, when to “hang up the keys”, senior defensive driving programs, and DrivAble assessments.

Bay Seniors ProgramJim Shields is with RCMP Traffic Services working out of the Cole Harbour Detachment. Much of his 21-years has been with this unit, and in recent years he has been working with local radio and television stations discussing topics such as road and weather conditions, summer vs. winter tires, and other highway safety topics.


Michael Tops is the Driver Improvement Manger for Safety Services Nova Scotia (SSNS). He has been doing driver training for 20-years and manages all of the driver training programs for SSNS. He currently teaches Motorcycle Training, Defensive Driving and Coaching; Performs driver assessments; and, is the primary examiner for the DriveAble program in Nova Scotia.


2015 Past Events (Photos by Fred Dolbel, Ed Bottrell and others)

Click here to see Past Events from 2012-2014

Click here to see Past Events from 2009-2011

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