Monday, December 20, 2004

Winnipeg Free Press

Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba

Page: 24

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Winnipeg Free Press (Newspaper) - December 20, 2004, Winnipeg, Manitoba B8 CITY / DISTRICT WINNIPEG FREE PRESS, MONDAY, DECEMBER 20, 2004. Energy-saving light bulbsRide the Christmas Express causingMini-train ride confusiondisplays winter By Helen Falldingwonderland By Jason Bell YOU could take the kids to see the flick The Polar Express... but why not let �em ride the Assiniboine Valley Railway through a real Christmas wonderland instead. Bill Taylor has the miniature train running again this holiday season on his Charleswood property, just past Assiniboine Park on Roblin Boulevard. Those familiar with the non-profit railway already know it�s a train defi�nitely bound for glory. But new riders won�t believe their eyes when they roll down one of two 600-metre routes through the amazing Christmas light display on the heavily wooded property. Taylor and a terrific crew of volun�teers have installed more than 69,000 Christmas lights, in the shapes of just about every Christmas symbol imagin�able � from angels to snowflakes, candy canes to wreaths and bells to reindeer. �I�ve always been fascinated by lights,� said Taylor, 60. �I get a great deal of satisfaction seeing the sparkle in kids� eyes. �It�s a great way to give people some added enjoyment at this time of year.� Taylor began brightening up his part of the city with an elaborate display of lights about 15 years ago. But it wasn�t until 1996 that the avid model rail�roader completed the outdoor railway in the bushes around his home. That December, about 500 riders took a brief tour. Now, it�s expected about 10,000 folks of all ages will ride the railway, he said. And as many as 40,000 more could swing by just to gaze at the brilliant light display. �It�s gotten pretty popular,� Taylor admitted. �We start putting up lights in October, and every year we add more and more. We�re still working on a few other things right now that should be ready for Christmas.� On each run, about a dozen riders take a scenic tour of Taylor�s property � passing through tunnels along the way. The rides are about eight-minutes long. �People really seem to appreciate the lights even more when they ride past them on the train,� he said. The lights are on from 6 p.m. until 10 p.m.. every evening until Jan. 2, although the property is closed to vehi�cles on Christmas Day. The railway runs 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m., unless the temperature dips below -25 C or during snow storms. It costs $2 per ride, and tickets and hot chocolate are available at the sta�tion. Viewing the lights and walking the nature trails is free, although there are buckets set up for donations to the Christmas Cheer Board. . jason.bell@freepress.mb.ca By Angela Johnston A team of MPs cutting across party lines has begun a cross-country push to lower the federal voting age to 16 from 18. �We�re trying to reach out to as many youth as possible,� said Mark Holland, Liberal MP for Ajax-Pickering, who authored a private member�s bill Nov. 4 to lower the voting age. Holland and Nathan Cullen, the NDP�s youth critic, said plans are in the works for five MPs who are pushing the bill to travel across the country in the new year. Both MPs pointed to declining voter participation as the main reason to extend voting rights. In the 2004 feder�al election, turnout was 60.9 per cent according to Statistics Canada � the lowest turnout to date. Cullen said extending the vote to 16�year-olds would tell young people that Today's Weather Whitehorse -5 / -16 Yellowknife -31 / -38 H PHOTOS BY MIKE DEAL / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS Tiffany Slobodian (above) and her son Domenico ride Assiniboine Valley Railway, a miniature train which takes visitors on a tour of more than 69,000 lights on property owned by Taylor (left) at 3001 Roblin Blvd. All-party team of MPs wants voting age lowered to 16 their opinions matter. to 18-year-olds would participate more He said he hoped such a move would in the electoral process than their 18- to have a ripple effect among older voters 25-year-old counterparts. too, helping usher in a �culture of vot-�The majority of students aren�t inter�ing.� ested in politics, don�t know what�s going But Raymond H�bert, a political stud-on, don�t read the newspaper,� he said of ies professor at the Coll�ge universitaire some 18-year-olds in his classes. Hebert de Saint-Boniface, called the move a sim-said he believed that the solution laid in plistic solution. He said that he did not encouraging political excitement with�expect the bill to create much effect. in high schools. �The problem is much deeper than The bill is expected to come to a vote that,� he said, noting that he doubted 16-early next year. ENERGY-saving light bulbs promoted by Manitoba Hydro are causing some confusion among consumers who are trying the funny-looking lights for the first time. The utility is getting calls from cus�tomers confused about safety of the compact fluorescent bulbs that screw into regular light sockets. Others want to know how to dispose of the unfamiliar bulbs or how to choose the right one for each light fixture. �It may sound complicated, but it real�ly isn�t,� said Manitoba Hydro�s Eric Witkowski. Easy for him to say � he�s an electri�cal engineer. The utility has already given away 80,000 compact fluorescent lights through a program that offered two free 13-watt bulbs for every one purchased from Sept. 25 to Oct. 26. They replace regular 60-watt bulbs. A second round of the promotion will start in May. Most homeowners are familiar with long fluorescent tubes. Compact fluo�rescent bulbs are like a small version that curls back on itself so both ends of the tube fit into a lamp socket. Compact fluorescents are more expen�sive than traditional light bulbs. How�ever, because the bulbs use a quarter of the energy of incandescent bulbs and last up to 10 times longer, they save con�sumers money � even without the util�ity promotion. Some defective compact fluorescent lights were recalled recently after a house fire near Edmonton. But the bulbs were sold before April 2003 � long before the Manitoba Hydro promotion. Like other fluorescent lights, compact fluorescents contain a tiny amount of toxic mercury gas. It�s legal to put a few in the trash, but businesses disposing of hundreds should take them to a hazardous waste site. �I would say the broken glass is more of a threat,� Witkowski said. A caller to the Free Press thought com�pact fluorescent lights could not be used outside in Manitoba winters, but Witkowski said some are rated to -30 C. Picking the right bulb is not as easy as grabbing a generic incandescent bulb from a box in the basement. Most compact fluorescents should not be used inside globes because they need ventilation. Some shades attached by wires do not fit properly over compact fluorescents. So far, most compact fluorescents do not work with dimmer switches, but multi-level switches are available to turn on different numbers of bulbs in a fix�ture. The energy-saving lights are available at hardware and some grocery stores. . helen.fallding@freepress.mb.ca Sunrise: 8:24 a.m. Sunset: 4:29 p.m. Moonrise: 1:19 p.m. Moonset: 2:10 a.m. Iqaluit -35 / -39 By: WeatherTec Services Map valid for noon December 20, 2004. �C 35 30 25 20 15 10 5 0 -5 -10 -15 -20 -25 -30 -35 -40 -45 �F 95 86 77 68 59 50 41 32 23 14 5 -4 -13 -22 -31 -40 -49 Churchill -27 / -35 St. John's Winnipeg Area Forecast L11 / 6 Edmonton Thompson A low pressure system will produce light snow, mild temperatures -10 / -16 -24 / -34LH and strong winds today. Conditions will be much colder tomorrow. TODAY... Periods of light snow and local blowing snow. Wind west Saskatoon -9 / -25Calgary Quebec City 40 km/h gusting to 70 km/h, then shifting to north in the afternoon.Vancouver 1 / -11 FrederictonVictoria 6 / 1 Thunder Bay High +2 (temperature falling to -20 in the evening). Low tonight -27.Regina -13 / -197 / 1 0 / -10-2 / -24 Winnipeg Wind chill -35 in the evening.-2 / -14 Montreal Halifax Seattle -16 / -19 4 / -28 / 1 +2 / -27 TUESDAY... Sunny. High -23. OttawaPortland Great Falls Minneapolis -19 / -198 / 1 Boston3 / -7 1 / -9 Milwaukee PRECIPITATION For the record - December 20Toronto -1 / -3 -2 / -9 L Max Min Mean November 1 to December 19-13 / -14 Boise New York City Last year................................-2.5 -6.7 -4.6 22.8 mm. 4 / -8 -4 / -8 Normal.................................-11.0 -20.6 -15.8 72% of normal.WindsorChicago Highest on record:............................4.4 in 1890 December 19 to 6 a.m.:-5 / -5 Washington Denver 0 / -3San Francisco Lowest on record...........................-40.6 in 1879 L Nil. 16 / 7 -4 / -512 / -7 11 / -62 / -5 Reno Salt Lake City St. LouisKansas CityLas 3 / -6 Manitoba Conditions Yesterday 9 / -2Vegas Albuquerque 18 / 5 13 / -1 H Orlando Los Angeles Miami Maximum to 4 p.m. Minimum 24-Hour Precipitation to 6 a.m.Memphis24 / 9 Atlanta 8 / 0 16 / 9 Phoenix 6 / 3 Winnipeg...........-15 .....................-30 .........................................nil 3 / -3San Diego 22 / 8 Thompson.........-24 .....................-37.....................................trace CHILL FACTOR (EQUIV. TEMP. ON EXPOSED FLESH) The Pas............-17.....................-34........................................0.6 20 / 10 LH 25 / 12Low High70 -3 -9 -16 -23 -30 -37 -44 -51 -59 -66 -73 -80 Gimli .................-15 .....................-36 .........................................nil Sunny Cloudy 60 -2 -9 -16 -23 -30 -37 -43 -50 -57 -64 -71 -78Thunder Pressure PressureWINDRain SPEED 50 -1 -8 -15 -22 -29 -35 -42 -49 -56 -63 -70 -76 Dauphin ..............-9 .....................-31 .........................................nil storm(Rain) (KM/H) 40 -1 -7 -14 -21 -27 -34 -41 -48 -54 -61 -68 -74 Brandon ..............-8 .....................-24 .........................................nil 30 0 -7 -13 -20 -26 -33 -39 -46 -52 -59 -65 -72 Honolulu (Snow) 20 1 -5 -12 -18 -24 -31 -37 -43 -49 -56 -62 -68 Portage .............-12 .....................-27 .........................................nil 27 / 20 10 3 -3 -9 -15 -21 -27 -33 -39 -45 -51 -57 -63 Kenora ..............-18 .....................-32 .........................................nil Partly Cold Warm(Thunder5 0 -5 -10 -15 -20 -25 -30 -35 -40 -45 -50ShowersSnowcloudy Front Front storm) AIR TEMPERATURE (C) Hot Spot: Melita -6 Cold Spot: Thompson -37 National, International Temperatures Extended Forecast ........................Max. Min. Montreal ............-16 -19 New Orleans.......12 8 London .................2 0 RESORTS Southern Manitoba CANADIAN Fredericton ...........0 -10 New York .............-4 -8 Manila.................28 18 Honolulu .............27 20 Sunny skies Wednesday and Thursday. Victoria..................7 1 Halifax ..................4 -2 San Francisco ....16 7 Mexico City.........18 4 Las Vegas...........18 5 Lows -29 to -28. Highs near -24. Normals: -21, -11. Vancouver.............6 1 St. John's............11 6 Seattle..................8 1 Moscow...............-2 -10 Miami..................16 9 Yellowknife ........-31 -38 U.S. WORLD Munich.................-4 -9 Orlando.................8 0 Northern Manitoba Whitehorse ..........-5 -16 Atlanta ..................3 -3 Amsterdam ...........1 -3 New Delhi ...........24 6 Phoenix ..............22 8 Sunny skies Wednesday and Thursday. Edmonton..........-10 -16 Boston.................-2 -9 Athens................13 8 Paris....................-1 -6 Tampa ................12 1 Lows -38 to -36. Highs -28 to -26. Normals: -29, -19.Calgary .................1 -11 Chicago ................0 -3 Beijing...................1 -12 Riyadh ................21 12 Acapulco.............31 22 Saskatoon ...........-9 -25 Dallas .................21 9 Dublin ...................6 0 Rome ..................11 2 Barbados ............31 21 Northwestern OntarioRegina.................-2 -24 Denver................12 -7 Hong Kong .........22 17 Stockholm ...........-4 -8 Havana...............20 14 Sunny skies Wednesday and Thursday. Thunder Bay........-2 -14 Detroit..................-6 -7 Jerusalem...........13 4 Sydney ...............24 12 Montego Bay ......27 18 Lows near -31. Highs near -20. Normals: -19, -10.Toronto..............-13 -14 Los Angeles........24 9 Kyiv.....................-2 -8 Tokyo..................17 8 Mazatlan.............28 16 Ottawa...............-19 -19 Minneapolis ..........1 -9 Lisbon.................14 9 Warsaw ...............-4 -7 Nassau ...............20 14 Information Source: Environment Canada 20% OFF YOUR STAY Valid Sunday to Thursday Ph. 204-348-7652 Min. 2 night stay, coupon must be presented to receive discount. Valid between Oct. 1st to March 31st, 2005, excluding all weekends and holiday periods.