Zoe Di Novi

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You may know Zoe Di Novi as Volunteer Coordinator extraordinaire, but did you also know that she was a volunteer Volunteer Coordinator? Or is that Volunteer Coordinator volunteer?

Anyhoo, although she was with Story Planet just briefly, her creativity, exuberance, and wise-cracking ways made her a natural fit for the Story Planet team, and she will be sorely missed now that she’s found a more lucrative outlet for her talents (congrats on the new job, Zoe!).

We wish her all the best, and demand that she come visit us soon.

 

 

Here is how Zoe answered our Story Planet Questionnaire:

1. Favourite Planet to live: Story Planet, obvi, but if that one’s all full, then I guess I’d live happily ever after on the planet of Warm Cider On A Cold Night, with a stop off on Venus. 

2. Favourite book or the last great one you read: I’m in the midst of Margaret Atwood’s Cat’s Eye and digging it hard, but this summer I devoured Alice Munro’s collection The Love Of A Good Woman and Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall.

3. Favourite writers: Edward St Aubyn, Anais Nin, Anthony Doerr.

4. Favourite thing to do on Earth: Watch and talk about movies.

5. Favourite Earth food: Bread pudding.

6. Favourite moment/memory from your experience here: My first day volunteering with the kids in Story Club just happened to land on Halloween. Princesses, masked superheroes, deer, cavewomen, Charlie Chaplin – the Story Planet atmosphere came alive with its own eccentric cast of characters. The day is a wild blur of genre, enthusiasm and laughs and I couldn’t have been happier to have been a part of it.

Corinne Impey

Corinne

Fabulous ITA volunteer, Corinne, is moving to the other side of the country and we are more than a little bit sad to see her go.

Corinne was one of our very first volunteers in the ITA, and has been with us longer than any other ITA volunteer! If we had a medal for commitment, she would surely be holding it right now.

Her radiant personality provided much appreciated pep behind the counter of the ITA, not to mention her ability to whip up a mean latte. What will we do without you?!

 

 

 

Here is how Corinne answered our Story Planet Questionnaire:

1. Favourite Planet to live: Jupiter – it has 63 moons!  

2. Favourite book or the last great one you read: Harriet the Spy, Sherlock Holmes…hmm, I’m sensing a trend. 

3. Favourite writers: Stuart McLean, Malcolm Gladwell.

4. Favourite thing to do on Earth: Host dinner parties with my favourite earthlings (no space food allowed). 

5. Favourite Earth food: Homemade guacamole. Yum!

6. Favourite moment/memory from your experience here: Meeting and getting to know all the patrons of the ITA. Especially the “regulars.” 🙂  

It has been a pleasure, Corinne! We wish you happy travels and many adventures!

Peter Scowen

The incredible Peter has volunteered in almost every program we offer and everywhere he goes kids adore him!

 Peter Scowen.Featured Explorer.Photo 1

Peter, a talented journalist, has been volunteering with us since last Spring when he helped host a workshop on tabloid fiction writing at St. Mary’s Secondary School.  Since then, Peter has been putting all of his skills to good use by volunteering at everything from our After-School Program and Youth Publishing Project to our Essay Bootcamp.  He has showed us he is equal parts patient homework tutor, magician, and essay hero.  But, as Peter said, “the highlight to me [of volunteering at Story Planet] has always been the after-school program.  I really enjoy that all of the kids are so great…I think I love most when they get so engaged in creating their stories.  It’s really great when you can see them riff on all the things [something] could be.”  The feeling is definitely mutual – although no one can remember how the kids decided on Sonny as his nickname, we know they love working with Peter and have written him into many of their adventure stories.

We can’t thank Peter enough for being part of Story Planet’s story!

And now five questions for Peter:

1. Favourite planet to live (other than Earth): “Mars, I like robots.”

2. Favourite book or the last great one you read:  “I just read Inferno by Dan Brown, it’s not high literature but it’s a great read.”

3. Favourite artist/s:  “My mother.  She was a great artist.”

4. Favourite thing to do on Earth:  “Eat.”

5. Favourite Earth food:  “Hamburgers.  No question.  With pizza a close second.”

Thank you for all you do, Peter!

 

Thanks so much to Midoco for sponsoring Story Planet’s Featured Explorer.

Check out Midoco Art & Office Supplies for your one-stop-shop for creative expression.  Established in 1977, they now have two destination outlets in the Annex and the Beaches

 

Jackie Kriekle

Jackie is an unstoppable volunteer coordinating force!

Since joining us in October, Jackie has welcomed almost 100 new volunteers as our volunteer Volunteer Coordinator. She has a knack for helping volunteers find their place at Story Planet and has helped us get organized as our charity grows.

Jackie has tackled many a project during her time here, including creating a brand new volunteer database from nothing but intergalactic scraps and a dream for a more organized tomorrow.

March is Jackie’s last month with us as our volunteer Volunteer Coordinator and we already miss her terribly.  During her time at Story Planet, she has made everything a little better and a lot more fun.

Jackie 1

Alright Jackie, it is time for the lightning round – tell us your five favourites!

1. Favourite planet to live (other than Earth):

“Saturn – I like the rings.”

2. Favourite book or the last great one you read:

The Hare with Amber Eyes, Edmund de Waal

3. Favourite artist/s:

“I’m not good at favourites, but Giorgio de Chirico”

4. Favourite thing to do on Earth:

“Being silly with my nephews.”

5. Best Earth food:

“The smell of melted cheese, because I can’t eat it…my mouth is watering just thinking about it!”

Thanks so much and good luck Jackie, we’ll miss you!

Thanks so much to Midoco for sponsoring Story Planet’s Featured Explorer.

Check out Midoco Art & Office Supplies for your one-stop-shop for creative expression.  Established in 1977, they now have two destination outlets in the Annex and the Beaches

Michelle Montenegro

The incredible Michelle inspires countless Story Planet students and reaches her 100th hour with us!

 

Michelle is an amazing and dedicated volunteer, spending twice a week with us in the after-school program, volunteering at the occasional Alpha workshop, and even volunteering in a local classroom.  She is patient, playful, and full of encouragement – we could not ask for more!  If you’re still not convinced she’s a treasure, here is what some Story Planet kids have to say about Michelle:

“Michelle is fun to talk to.” – Shanjai

“I like to play bananagrams with Michelle!  Thank you!” – Mithulaa

“She’s fun to draw with.” – David

“She’s really nice!” – Rosie

“[When I get to work] with Michelle, she reads the story for me and I like it and I like her!” – Joanne

Thank you for all you do, Michelle!

 

Thanks so much to Midoco for sponsoring Story Planet’s Featured Explorer.

Check out Midoco Art & Office Supplies for your one-stop-shop for creative expression.  Established in 1977, they now have two destination outlets in the Annex and the Beaches

 

Brigitte Ward

Our volunteer, Brigitte or ‘Bat Girl’ as she is known in the after-school program, helps kids with their homework and inspires students to write stories and monster poems.

 

Since our first after-school session, Brigitte has come out every week and has recently started to offer her incredible story-building services on Fridays at our Alpha workshops!  Every Tuesday afternoon, Brigitte works with our after-school kids; to find out more about Brigitte check out some questions from our After-School kids:

Alice:  Why do you come to Story Planet?

Brigitte:  I come to Story Planet because I love being inspired by the creative energy of the children.

Charlie:  Do you have a job other than Story Planet?

Brigitte:  I have many jobs, such as serving patrons in a restaurant, walking my dog, and my other job is being an unemployed high school teacher who dreams of being a neurosurgeon.  I actually did dream that for a long time.

Navina:  What is your favourite book?

Brigitte:  Oh my favourite book…I have many favourite books such as In the Skin of a Lion by Michael Ondaatje, Patrick in In the Skin of  a Lion was my first literary love.

Joshren:  Do you know somebody from the NBA?

Brigitte:  I met Michael Jordan in my dreams.

Tyson:  What’s your favourite thing to eat at breakfast?

Brigitte:  Apple pie with cheddar cheese, a slice on the side.

Pragadheesh:  What do you wish to be when you grow up?

Brigitte:  I wish to be, well this is aside from the neuroscience thing, I have to think about this for a second…a galaxy ranger and exploration girl, and a purveyor of fine fruit preserves.

Thanks Brigitte, you are fantastic!

Thanks so much to Midoco for sponsoring Story Planet’s Featured Explorer.

Check out Midoco Art & Office Supplies for your one-stop-shop for creative expression.  Established in 1977, they now have two destination outlets in the Annex and the Beaches

 

Callen Schaub

Callen’s dynamic art inspires our kids!

Callen has worked with Story Planet on countless occasions and recently, he has also begun volunteering at our after-school program. This energetic artist loves working with kids because he likes “the fresh perspective…Kids say things instinctively without censoring themselves. They’re honest, and the initial response is nice. In the art world, things get too pretentious or too over-analyzed.”

Using a variety of home-made contraptions, including one made from a bike, Callen uses gravity and centrifugal force to create abstract art. During workshops, the kids have the opportunity to add a colour or brush stroke to the painting. When kids have a chance to help create a piece, it inspires them even more during the story-making workshop.  Running the workshops helps Callen see “why you make art in the first place.”

Check out Callen’s page to see more of his collection. Thank you Callen for your constant dedication – Story Planet wouldn’t be the same without your talents and your enthusiasm!

1. Favourite planet to live (other than Earth):

“A lot of planets are really inhabitable, I would like to be just on the moon because I’m close enough to come home… It’d be cool to live on Jupiter, or on one of Jupiter’s moons, but that’s far.”

2. Favourite book:

The Power of Now, Eckhart Tolle

3. Favourite artist/s:

Banksy, Gerhard Richter, Van Gogh, and Tom Shannon

4. Favourite thing to do on Earth:

Paint

5. Best Earth food:

A BLT sandwich

 

Thanks so much to Midoco for sponsoring Story Planet’s Featured Explorer.

Check out Midoco Art & Office Supplies for your one-stop-shop for creative expression.  Established in 1977, they now have two destination outlets in the Annex and the Beaches.

 

Lindsey Tashlin

Our volunteer, Lindsey, helps the Intergalactic Travel Authority run like a well-oiled spaceship.

Lindsey has been helping out at the Intergalactic Travel Authority since our launch back in July. She has hands-on experience with the special brewing process of our Black Hole coffee and is an excellent Story Planet ambassador to Earthlings who want to learn more about what we do. She loves that the ITA is full of “positive energy, smart and creative people,” and every time she volunteers, she has fun!

When she’s not at the ITA, she enjoys hanging out with her two children and going camping in their 1966 fifteen-foot trailer. One day, she hopes to go camping on the Moon!

Thank you Lindsey for all your hard work! Your contributions make our mission possible!

 

1. Favourite planet to live (other than Earth):

Pluto. It’s the furthest away and most intriguing, even though it’s not technically a planet… it was when I was growing up!

2. Favourite book:

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

3. Favourite artist/s:

Keith Haring, Jean-Michel Basquiat, and Norval Morrisseau.

4. Favourite thing to do on Earth:

Read!

5. Best Earth food:

A really good homemade cheeseburger, not the ones from restaurant chains.

 

Thanks so much to Midoco for sponsoring Story Planet’s Featured Explorer.

Check out Midoco Art & Office Supplies for your one-stop-shop for creative expression.  Established in 1977, they now have two destination outlets in the Annex and the Beaches

Eric Kim

As a boy, Eric Kim never imagined he would one day work as an illustrator.  But he has used his “humble beginnings” to connect with the Bloordale community through art.

Eric Kim drawing

Eric Kim is a supernova at Story Planet.

He has leant his considerable talents (he’s awesome at computer animation and has a Bachelor of Arts Illustration degree from Sheridan College) to Story Planet as a volunteer and artist at our workshops – everything from drawing characters at Alpha workshops to leading a seven week Manga for Girls workshop.

Eric loves that Story Planet does what he enjoys doing – making stories and giving young students a chance to create. He believes that “being comfortable with being creative is at the heart of Story Planet”. Eric will continue to work with us in any capacity because he thinks storymaking bridges gaps – inspiring kids to become engaged and involved in their community.

Eric is currently working with Manga Dojo to offer workshops to students ages 13-17. This workshop series encourages Canadian talent and spreads the message that anyone can draw comics and publish at any age. He is also working on a book titled Billy Smoke which should hit shelves in 2013.

1. Favourite planet to live (other than Earth):
“Mars, because it’s most like Earth. And there’s a romance to Mars.”

2. Fav book:
It’s a tie between Snow Crash, by Neal Stephenson, and Neuromancer, by William Gibson. The rest of the books by those two authors come in a close second.

3. Fav artist/s:
Rumiko Takahashi. Also, Inio Asano is a real treat to read.

4. Fav thing to do on Earth:
Draw and write stories!

5. Best Earth food:
Barbecued ribs!