• Jim Cooperman is a curious man. He is also an author, historian, columnist, environmentalist and avid skier. So when a son’s friend sent him a link to ARCA, an online platform developed by BC Regional Digitalized History, he entered Shuswap into the search bar. To his surprise and delight, a number of photos appeared, most of them belonging to two albums by Erskine Burnett called The Shuswap Country and B.C.’s Inland Empire held by the Enderby and District Museum and Archives. Upon further investigation, Cooperman learned the photos taken in the 1930s and ‘40s were accompanied by “intriguing” text. Cooperman became determined to bring the little known archival scrapbook to today’s public in the form of a book. A neighbour transcribed the original text onto a computer for Cooperman, who wrote an introduction to the book and began the editing process. Salmon Arm artist Otto Pfannschmidt, who is designing the book, rescanned and photoshopped the photos. While he describes the process of producing the book a chore, Cooperman says the effort has been rewarding.
• The home and all the belongings of a Blind Bay mom and her three children went up in smoke on April 5. About 11:45 a.m. Tuesday, the Shuswap Fire Department was paged regarding a residential fire in the 3100 block of Cedar Drive in Blind Bay. When firefighters arrived, the single-family home was already fully engulfed in flames. Laine Cooper, owner of Aria Mei-Spa & Laser Clinic where Pamela Wiegand, the woman whose home burned, is a cosmetic tattoo artist, said Pamela was getting set up for her five-year-old daughter Olive’s birthday party. Olive was at daycare but Pamela, her son Riley, 17, and daughter Cameron, 15, were home. Cooper said the three family members had to leave the house so quickly that wallets, identification and vehicle keys were left behind. While Emergency Social Services provided the family with initial necessities including hotel accommodation for a few days, friends were scrambling to find them a permanent rental home.
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