November 2017 BCATW Buzz

President’s Message

Baila Habitat sm

Baila Lazarus

Hello fellow travellers. I’m just taking a moment in a very quiet Phoenix airport to address you with a very important message.

In just under two weeks we’re going to hold our AGM. Right now, we have 5 positions that will be need to be filled:

  • Secretary
  • Treasurer
  • Media Liaison
  • Travel Industry Member

In the upcoming weeks, you may get a call from a current director asking you to stand for one of these positions. PLEASE consider stepping forward. These are not very time consuming positions by any means. Board meetings take place once every two months and often by Zoom if we can’t meet in person. We try to arrange meetings to accommodate everyone’s schedule and if you have to miss a meeting or two, that’s OK. Everything else is taken care of by email. All our previous and current directors will support anyone who steps into a new position.

Many of you have taken advantage of BCATW features, such as the symposium, the Meetups, information about FAM trips, etc. These don’t happen on their own. This is extremely vulnerable time as we will be left with only three board members if no one else steps forward.

BCATW is your society. Please consider contributing a few hours a month to keep it at its best.

Baila Lazarus, BCATW President.

BCATW Annual General Meeting


Annual General Meeting of the British Columbia Association of Travel Writers will be held on Monday, November 13, 2017 at 7 PM.

Location: Vancity, 183 Terminal Ave., Vancouver, BC, directly above Main St. Skytrain station.

* Vancity requires all visitors to present valid government photo ID to enter their premises.

We look forward to seeing you all at the AGM!

Media Member News

Man Photographing Whales

A man photographs four orcas as they pass close to shore. Photo by Karoline Cullen

Karoline Cullen’s article on shore-based whale watching on Galiano Island, “In Awe of Orcas”, was published in several BC papers. 

Ruth Kozak has had two more stories accepted by EuropeUpClose. She recently returned from a successful three-week jaunt to Greece. During this time she met her writer/mentor friend Dr Jack Dempsey, in person since years of internet contact, at Iraklion Crete. She also successfully completed three excellent readings of her novel SHADOW OF THE LION (both volumes). One at the Canadian Institute; to a class  of 50 grade 9 students at the Athens Community School as well as a workshop with older students; and a reading and reception at the Athens Centre.  Her work and lectures were well received by all and she has been invited to return next year.

Dale Chihuly’s Bridge of Glass Seaform Pavilion ceiling in Tacoma consist of over 2000 glass objects, which makes you feel like you are underwater at a great coral reef of beautiful glass shapes. | Photo: Edward Quan

Luxury Fashion & Travel writer Edward Quan has just returned from a Tacoma + Pierce County WA FAM, hometown of world-famous glass artist Dale Chihuly.

Tacoma + Pierce County WA offers the perfect family weekend getaway as there is plenty to see and do for all ages. Within easy walking distance of the downtown core are the Museum of Glass, Tacoma Art Museum, plus three fabulous outdoor public glass art works by Dale Chihuly.

Hopping on board Tacoma’s new light rail system, he visited the largest private vintage automobile collection in America, the LeMay America’s Car Museum. Featuring four floors of automobiles from classic American convertibles to the British Invasion – Austin-Healey, Mini, MG to custom coach works by Duesenberg, Lincoln and Mercedes-Benz from the 1930’s.

Each day, Edward Quan woke up inspired at the Hotel Murano, a boutique downtown Tacoma hotel offering luxurious guest rooms with museum worthy collection of glass art from around the world.

Tacoma has been steadily undergoing a renaissance in recent years. Edward Quan’s travel story on discovering their exceptional art culture will appear soon on Style Drama.

Armenia Republic

Armenia Republic Photo by Irene Butler

Irene Butler’s story “Captivating Armenia” was published on Travel Writers Tales, and in their affiliated newspapers, Kamloops This Week and Vernon Morning Star. Rick and Irene have traded their previously booked winter in southern Spain for a drive through the southern USA, with sojourns from there to a few countries in the “scorching weather/sandy beach” category.

The view from the Kettle Valley Railway trail near Penticton in mid-October. © Photos by Pharos 2017

Julie H. Ferguson discovered that her move to Penticton feels like being on vacation. So much to explore and enjoy in between preparing her assignments from the Europe and Russia trip. She has joined the local photoclub and has attended her first meeting. This group has two field trips each month, summer and winter, as well as a monthly assignment to challenge creativity in its members. Julie is also planning her trip to Hong Kong and China at the end of March 2018.


Sombrero Island Photo by Jett Britnell

Jett and Kathryn Britnell
have several projects currently in development. Ocean Realm Traveler magazine has published their story about diving at Sombrero Island in the Philippines. On October 28th, they attended the Explorers Club 2017 Lowell Thomas Awards Dinner held for the first time in Canada at Toronto’s Royal Ontario Museum.

Industry Member News

Saudi Arabia Tour 2

Bestway Tours & Safaris is introducing another milestone exploratory journey into a country which has been closed to tourists for many years. The destination is KSA – the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia – a region steeped with rich heritage but still shrouded by mystery. Bestway invites all intrepid travellers to join the 8-day Saudi Arabia: Behind the Veil tour and experience this country’s culture and history for yourself. With only two departures available – Feb 5 and March 29, 2018 – spaces are filling up fast. Contact Bestway Tours & Safaris at for further information.

BCTW Meetups

So long, Big Rock!

We are sorry to report that due to a change of management policy, BCTW will no longer hold monthly Meetups at Big Rock Urban Eatery after the November 1 Meetup.

If you know of a centrally located, private or commercial venue willing to host the BCTW Meetups, please let us know!

Our criteria is simple:

  • 20 person capacity, private or semi-private room
  • Food and beverage service
  • Wide-screen TV preferred, white wall acceptable
  • Near transit
  • Available weekday evenings

Hopefully, with your help, we’ll have a new home by January!

How to Write about Accessible Travel for a Growing Market with Dannielle Hayes

Wednesday, November 1, 2017, 7:00 PM – TONIGHT!

Big Rock Urban Eatery 310 West 4th Ave, Vancouver, BC

This time we’ll meet DOWNSTAIRS in the room next to the growler fill up station, which is fully accessible.

More than 1 billion people worldwide are living with some form of disability. They have money, they want to travel, and they are intrepid travellers. Find out about accessible travel from Dannielle Hayes who will discuss why is it important now and in the future.

In this unique Meetup, travel writers will learn:

– what is meant by accessibility from a disabled viewpoint
– what to look for when researching a destination, hotel, etc.
– the advantages of writing about accessible travel
– how stories about accessible travel can be pitched


About Danielle

After a successful career as a travel photographer and writer, a paralyzing stroke in 2010 has not slowed down Dannielle Hayes. She is the author of Traveling Light, Photographic Memories of a Global Nomad, her third book, and is just starting a blog at 


“I am not the same, having seen the moon shine on the other side of the world.”
– Mary Anne Radmacher

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2 Responses to November 2017 BCATW Buzz

  1. Ruth Kozak November 1, 2017 at 5:31 pm #

    MARI, November 13 is a Tuesday and you said Monday. Also I am willing to continue assessing new members writing contributions and the required stories published every two years by full members.

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