Look over the upcoming October events and note the many celebrating the harvest and giving thanks throughout the month.

This year, in spite of the water shortage, most gardens produced an abundance, and people have been generous in sharing with friends, neighbours, food banks and homeless shelters. Gratitude for this open-handed caring culture!

Community fall fairs invite us to come and celebrate the gifts of the earth.

Don’t miss the annual Apple Festival at Cooper’s Green, with the traditional apple butter to make and sell, and some mighty fine cider to enjoy along with the live music.

The bears have been enjoying the harvest, too. Wherever people were too slow to pick their near-ripe fruit, the bruins sniffed it out and ate it up. Raccoons and deer also enjoyed the harvest, and behind them came their predators: cougar, wolves, and coyotes. We are lucky to live where we can catch a glimpse of these wild creatures – but remember to show our gratitude for their existence by keeping people food where they can’t get at it.

This month, we show our gratitude for our vibrant arts community with events that celebrate the varied tapestry stretching from Langdale to Earl’s Cove. The Sechelt Arts Festival offers stellar entertainment, while the Art Crawl opens hundreds of hidden studios Coastwide. Everyone connected with the tourism industry is grateful  for these events’ drawing power, with guests filling accommodations and restaurants on what was once a slow “shoulder season” weekend.

All this cultural activity almost makes us forget it’s an election year for Local Government representatives and School District trustees. Get informed, then get out and vote. Be grateful that you can – as they say, millions of people are dying for the opportunity we take for granted.