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Temporary Relocation of the Visitor Information Centre of Val-d’Or

Temporary Relocation of the Visitor Information Centre of Val-d’Or

Due to important renovations, the Visitor Information Centre of Val-d’Or will be relocated temporary at the city hall of Val-d’Or (855, 2e Avenue, Val-d’Or, J9P 4P4), approximately from December to Mid-May. The opening hours will also change during this relocation, Monday thru Friday, 8:30am to noon and 1:30pm to 4:30pm.

Please note that the city hall as well as the Visitor Information Centre of Val-d’Or will be close from December 22nd to January 2nd for the Holidays.

Also, the Visitor Information Centre of Val-d’Or will be close a few days to move at the city hall. These dates will be announced on December 12th.

For any question or information about the tourist offer of Val-d’Or, we invite you to contact us by email or phone at 819 824-9646 or 1 877 582-5367 (toll free). You can also visit or website tourismevaldor.com.

Temporary closing of the Boutique Expo-art

Also for the renovations of our Visitor information Centre, our gift shop Boutique Expo-Art will be close temporary from December 7th. After the Visitor Information Centre will be moved at the city hall, a few products will be on sale as much as jewelleries, regional products and postal cards. However, inventory will be limited during that relocation.

Where to get an annual or daily pass for snowmobile trails

During relocation, annual and daily passes for snowmobile trails will be on sale at Béric Sport (50, 3e Avenue).

Photo de couverture | Erda Estremera

Le Quality Inn & Suites de Val-d’Or désigné Hôtel de l’année 2018 par Choice Hotels Canada

Le Quality Inn & Suites de Val-d’Or désigné Hôtel de l’année 2018 par Choice Hotels Canada

Choice Hotels Canada is thrilled to announce the Quality Inn & Suites, Val d’Or has been named the 2018 Canadian Hotel of the Year at the 64th annual Choice Hotels International Convention in Las Vegas, Nevada.

 

Quality Inn & Suites, Val d’Or was chosen from among 12 hotels for this annual award. The nominees all received a 2018 Platinum Hospitality Award, which recognizes properties in the top three per cent of more than 325 hotels within the Choice Canada family.

 

This is the sixth consecutive year the hotel has been honoured with a Platinum Award, having been recognized each year since the hotel opened in 2011. This is the second time the hotel was been awarded this distinction. In 2014, the Quality Inn & Suites, Val-d’Or was recognized not only as Canadian Hotel of the Year, but also the International Hotel of the Year for the Quality brand.

 

“Quality Inn & Suites, Val-d’Or is one of our most awarded hotels across the system,” said Brian Leon, President, Choice Hotels Canada. “The ownership and hotel team truly embody the best of the best and are committed to providing superior guest experience.”

 

Choice Guest Rating ranks the hotel a 4.8 out of 5, and 99 per cent of guests would recommend. The property is also top ranked in its market by TripAdvisor and receives consistently stellar reviews. Located near downtown, the hotel is owned and managed by the Cree Regional Economic Entreprises Company (CREECO) of Eeyou Istchee and Trahan Holdings of Val-d’Or. For business travellers, the hotel boasts a full business centre with conference facilities. The hotel also operates a hot breakfast service that is free to customers.

 

Reservations at the Quality Inn & Suites, Val-d’Or can be made by calling (819) 874-8888 or by visiting www.choicehotels.ca.

Source and information

Carolyn Kilbourne
Carlaw Communications
carolyn@carlawcommunications.com
416-399-4767

hotel quality inn et suites chambre 1 lit

Room of the Quality Inn & Suites Val-d’Or

Quality inn_hotels_salle de conference

A conference room ath Quality Inn & Suites Val-d’Or

The Best Lures for Catching Walleye

The Best Lures for Catching Walleye

A visit to the Zone Chasse et Pêche store in Val-d’Or and some browsing on the Web turned up lots of expert advice about the best lures to use for fishing walleye in Abitibi. I’d like to share my findings and personal favourites with you here.

Before I get to lures, just a little reminder about the new government bait-fish regulation. It took effect on April 1, 2017 and is intended to minimize risks associated with using bait-fish, commonly known as minnows. Click here to see the new regulation.

  • The use of live bait-fish is prohibited everywhere in Quebec.
  • The use of dead bait-fish in the summer is prohibited everywhere in Quebec.
  • For winter use, go to the Ministère des forêts, de la faune et des parcs du Québec (MFFP – Quebec Department of forests, wildlife and parks) Web site by clickling here. (map available in French only)

And, remember that walleye must now be transported whole or in ‘wallet’ filets. The MFFP Web site states as follows:

  • When a fisherman has in his possession elsewhere than at this permanent residence fish caught while sportfishing, the fish must be in a state that makes it possible to determine the species (for example, by leaving sufficient skin on the flesh to identify it), the length and the number. When a length limit applies, the fish must be transported in such a way that its length can be measured. Here’s the link.

Here are the top five tried-and-true lures to use for catching walleye in Abitibi

P^che leurre doré poissons nageurs thin fin perchaude

Floating Minnows

The Hot ’N Tot and the Thin Fin are two of my faves. The Hot’N Tot, with its genuine metal lip, classic shape and wild movement, is a legendary bait. It’s excellent for trolling. Walleye cannot resist its side-to-side searching action. What is also great about the Hot ’N Tot, is that even if you scrape the bottom (which is ideal when fishing for walleye), it doesn’t get snagged because it flips upside down when it hits an obstacle. It really helps in areas that are rocky or where branches have sunk to the bottom. Whether it’s a bright sunny day or twilight, the Hot ’N Tot will help you to provoke strikes and be very productive.

The Thin Fin is a classic go-to that all serious fishermen need to have in their tackle box. With its multi-ball rattle, the Thin Fin emits a clicking sound and a vibration underwater as it moves. The lure sinks head first and has an erratic, darting action that imitates natural movement. The longer and more pronounced the tongue, the deeper it goes. You’ll see that the Thin Fin is very effective early in the season when the walleye is shallow. My husband really loves the Thin Fin for fishing walleye. In fact, he used it to land his biggest one yet: 9.5 lbs!

This is all well and good, but you are probably wondering what colour swimming fish lure is best for walleye – there are countless ones to choose from. Happily, I have an answer for you!

Perch imitation is a very good choice because it’s prey of choice for walleye. They’re crazy about perch!

Natural black and silver works everywhere. Using the most natural colour will give you better results in clear to moderately clear water.

Walleye imitation because the walleye is notorious for cannibalism. You can go for an imitation of a fish whose appearance and action remind the walleye of its food. Daniel Robitaille, professional fisherman, fishing guide and columnist for the Quebec hunting and fishing magazine, Aventure Chasse et Pêche, recommends the 7-cm. gold/black Flicker Shad. He says it has done an amazing job virtually everywhere he’s tried it!

pêche doré marcheur de fond leurre appât

Bottom walkers

Walleye can often be found just a few feet above the lake bottom. The bottom walker is just a metal pin bent to 90° with a sinker attached to it. The rule of thumb for choosing the proper sinker weight is an ounce for every 10 feet of water. The three- to four-foot worm harness goes behind the bottom walker. You can use a little Indiana-type spoon for the harness, in pink, fire tiger, chartreuse or silver, colours that work well for walleye. The classic technique is to troll slowly, using an earthworm. The sound of the bottom walker hitting the rocks excites the predators, who are territorial.

Pêche doré leurre live target bait ball poisson nageur

Live Target Bait Ball

This realistic lure works really well in clear water. It imitates a school of small fishes, and as such is an attractant for walleye, who see it as a big lunch in one fell swoop! Its medium dive lip and slender body allow the bait to dive quickly and hold in the strike zone longer.

Pêche doré appât poisson souple hameçon

Flexible Bait

Flexible bait is used with a jig head. You insert the hook under the belly and bring it out at the top of the back. Flexible bait vibrates, and so there’s a lot of action in the water. It’s exactly the kind of food the walleye is looking for. You can cast or troll with this lure.

jigger pêcher à la jig pêche doré dandinette

Jigger

Despite their small size, jiggers are formidable allies in the search for the most beautiful walleye. These guys have a fat little body and a lively tail that vibrates at high speed. Jiggers will yield excellent results early in the season with fish that are starting to feed again. The jig must move up and down slowly. The deeper you go, the heavier the jigger head you need; the same applies when there’s a current or wind. The deeper the colour of the water, the better it is to select highly visible colours like orange, yellow, green or chartreuse. Chartreuse is the colour that got me my best walleye so I highly recommend it ;-). In crystalline water, natural colours can often work very well. The biggest sellers at Zone Chasse et pêche are pink, white, blue and chartreuse. I have purchased a few pinks and blues and intend to try them out this summer!

A more accessible destination for everyone – free auditory aids

A more accessible destination for everyone – free auditory aids

Val-d’Or’s tourism facilities are equipped to serve the hearing impaired with a free auditory aids. There are frequency modulation (FM) amplification systems in place that offer wireless technology to meet the basic needs of hearing-impaired persons. This service is provided free of charge with the support and cooperation of several organizations: the Centre integré de santé et de services sociaux de l’Abitibi-Témiscamingue (Abitibi-Témiscamingue integrated health & social services centre), the Val-d’Or Lions Clubs, and the Val-d’Or Tourism and Convention Bureau.

How do the MF systems work

The equipment helps to isolate the primary sound at the expense of ambient sounds. It directs the audible signal of interest directly into the ears of the hearing-impaired person by eliminating reverberation, the effect of distance and the annoyance of background noise. This free auditory aids can be used with a headset and is also compatible with hearing aids and cochlear implants.

Auditory aids accessible destination for hearing-impaired person Val-d'Or

The MF systems are easy to use and light. It can be used with a headset and is also compatible with hearing aids and cochlear implants.

Where are the FM systems available

How do visitors arrange to get one of these FM systems for a visit of an attraction

Visitors wishing to use this complementary service can reserve it ahead of time by phone, through an online reservation form or directly from the tourist information office.

How can visitors arrange to get one of theses FM systems for a show at one of the city’s performing art venues

To borrow the equipment at the Théâtre Télébec or Salle Félix Leclerc, please arrive at the venue’s ticket office at least 20 minutes before the show starts.

How do visitors arrange to get one of theses FM systems at the Forestel – Convention center

The MF systems is always set in the banquet room of the convention center. To borrow the equipment, the hearing-impaired person just have to ask a member of the Forestl’s team before the beginning of the event. This auditory aids can be set in any other meeting space of  the Forestel. Otherwise, the request should be maid at the same time of the meeting room reservation.

How do visiotrs arrange to get one of these FM systems for a show at the conservatory

The hearing-impaired person can call in advance the conservatory by phone at (819) 354.4585.

How much do this auditory aids cost to use

The FM systems in Val-d’Or are available to everyone, free of charge.

Disappointment-Free Fishing

Disappointment-Free Fishing

Every year the retreating ice signals the frenzied start of fishing season.

Just a few minutes from Val-d’Or and we are in the great outdoors, speckled with numerous lakes awaiting us. With rod in one hand and tackle in the other, we’re ready for a brand-new day of fishing, on the hunt for the best-looking pike in the lake!

We become more patient as we bask in the silence on the water and take advantage of these moments of serenity to admire nature, feel the gentle rocking of the boat, listen to the birds, breathe in the fresh air, turn our faces to the warmth of the sun and admire all the colours of the natural world.

Then, a bite!! The adrenaline starts to flow! We get ready for that last tug that will land our prize in the boat. Every fish that comes out of the water is followed by a surge of pride!

pêche Réserve faunique La Vérendrye Abitibi-Témiscamingue Fishing Val-d'Or

In the Réserve faunique La Vérendrye, over 800 lakes are accessible for fishing. They have walleye, lake trout, northern pike, speckled trout, smallmouth bass, and sturgeon.

In our bubble, the only thing on our mind is fishing and we experience the restorative effect of nature and the sense of well-being it brings. If we want to appreciate every second of our fishing days to the fullest and not give in to disappointment, we have to appreciate the natural landscape around us and keep our expectations in check.

Lunchtime? Time to return to shore, light a small fire and toast our sandwiches – yummy!

Fish aren’t biting? Time to try some different techniques or different bait. We’ve got all day to meet our quota. In the heat of the afternoon sum, we find a little beach on the shore and play in the water for a few minutes. Then it’s back into the boat for a cool one!

We come home sun-tanned, our catch in the basket – what a wonderful way to spend a day, to spend the summer! And we’ll have plenty of fishing stories to tell as well.

And what could be better than fresh pike sizzling on the grill? If you’ve never had it, give it a try. It’s unbelievably delicious!

 

Translated by Anne Laflèche

A Huge Hunting Playground

A Huge Hunting Playground

What a thrill it is to hunt small game in the enchanting landscapes that surround Val-d’Or. The many forest roads and trails that meander through the region are home to a wide range of abundant small game. Sport hunters will be captivated by the area, which is easily accessed and offers perfect small game habitats.

Once you start, hunting quickly becomes a passion, as any hunter will tell you. The autumn chill and early mornings are discomforts quickly overcome when you proudly return with your quarry. But you have to be well prepared and armed with a healthy dose of patience and the ability to sit quietly in order to bag your catch. For wild game aficionados, there is no commercially-raised meat that tastes as good as game, which is often leaner and more flavourful.

There are close to 400,000 hunters in Quebec who enjoy the wilderness, whether for the challenge, the great outdoors, the peace and quiet, a taste for game or the pleasure of being with friends or family. Of course, safety is paramount, as is keeping the environment intact so that future generations can enjoy hunting as well.

chasse hunting perdrix Val-d'Or Abitibi-Témiscmaingue petit gibier small game

Ruffed Grouse

small game chasse trappe Abitibi-Témiscamingue lièvre petit gibier

Snowshoe hare

The nearby La Vérendrye wildlife reserve is immense, and eminently suitable for small game hunting. According to park manager Johanne Vienneau, the reserve attracts two types of hunters: those who live in the area, and overnight hunters looking for accommodation. The main small game attractions are spruce grouse, ruffled grouse and hare. Hunters take to the paths in vehicles, ATVs or on foot, some with hunting dogs. The success rate is high, particularly since hunting season in the reserve starts in mid-October once the leaves have fallen and the weather is still good. According to Ms. Vienneau, small game hunting licences for the La Vérendrye wildlife reserve can be purchased on the Sépaq website 24 hours in advance or at the visitor information centre.

Small game hunting is increasingly becoming a family affair. Marie-Claude and her partner are the parents of two daughters, 4 months and 7 years old, and hunt as a family! Marie-Claude packs their lunches and the diaper bag in the morning and they head out together to hunt partridge, on foot or in the car. For Marie-Claude, like many others, spending time in the woods is calming and a way to unload the stress of the previous week. And the family believes in the importance of caring for nature and not leaving garbage behind. At the end of the day, even the 7-year-old pitches in to lay out the partridge, the fruits of an ancestral experience passed down through the generations.

Fall is hunting season, when the seemingly endless forest floor is carpeted with leaves. If you haven’t given small game hunting a try, don’t be intimidated. It’s a fairly simple pastime for families and friends. Happy hunting!

 

Translated by Anne Laflèche

From Innovate to Classic

From Innovate to Classic

Dear Readers: This month we’re reviewing four pizza restaurants in Val-d’Or. Keep reading to expand your gastronomic horizons and find out where you can get the best pizzas in town. We used a scale of 1 to 4, with 4 being best, to assess 10 criteria. So, without further delay, let’s look at our four reviews (done at the expense of our waistlines!).

Microbrasserie le Prospecteur bistro
Microbrasserie le Prospecteur bieres artisanales

Price | $15.00

Conveniently located in downtown Val-d’Or, Microbrasserie Le Prospecteur serves up original pizzas, such as vegetable and goat cheese, or BBQ featuring smoked chicken from Boucanerie Fins Délices and a house BBQ sauce made with beer. Yum! We tried the Polonaise, with kielbassa, loads of toppings, just the right amount of sauce and an excellent aged cheese. Numerous craft beers are brewed on site to pair with the different pizzas. Prices are very affordable, the atmosphere is authentic and the lunchtime “pizza of the day” will satisfy your appetite without breaking your budget. A great place to eat for lunch or dinner!

Pizza bella restaurants valdor
pizza bella restaurants italien grec

Price | $19.50

The pizza looked appetizing and the aroma alone made us hungry. The crust was crispy with nicely-done edges, lots of toppings and melted cheese. The portions were perfect, just enough to keep us from feeling stuffed to the gills. And it was tasty! The restaurant’s reputation for service did not disappoint – our server was friendly and attentive. The menu boasts close to 20 pizzas, including the house specialty, Bella (with smoked meat), the Hawaiian, and the Seafood, so there is something for everyone and enough variety to keep you coming back. The pizza has excellent texture with just the right amount of toppings.

pizza val dor resto

Price | $17.67

The crust was perfectly cooked, including the edge, the toppings were attractive and the vegetables crunchy. There was plenty of the tomato-based sauce, with slightly salty cheese. And the intoxicating aroma wafted through the room. The slices are thick and the portions generous. There are close to 15 pizzas on the menu to choose from, including the Four Seasons for meat lovers, with bacon, olives, ground beef and ham. This family restaurant has a nice atmosphere, where good portions, good prices and good taste rule the day. If you are a diehard fan of classic pizza, this is the place for you!

Avantage_bar_restaurants_ambiance
Pizza restaurants Val-d'Or

Price | $16.75

Hip pizzeria L’Avantage is also downtown, and as soon as we smelled that pizza aroma we were hungry. Abitibi-Témiscamingue’s only wood-fired pizza is cooked to perfection, with a delicious crust, just the right amount of toppings, a silky and delicately spiced tomato sauce and succulent melted cheese, all adding up to one exquisite dish. The restaurant’s original pizza creations, including The Pesto and The Mexican, are sure-fire crowd-pleasers. The American, our favourite, melts in your mouth. L’Avantage offers excellent pizza at an excellent price, and according to our review process, deserves the title Best Pizza in Town. You simply must give it a try. The top-notch food and service, combined with the warm and welcoming atmosphere add up to an unforgettable gastronomic experience. You can hear yourself talk and the flavours are distinctly down home.

Make your taste buds happy and put these four restaurants on your list. Sample their fresh ingredients, innovative dishes, and pleasant surroundings, and rediscover the classics, with a touch of contemporary style! You’ll love the delicious pizza, the great prices and the service at these warm and welcoming restaurants!

 

Translated by Anne Laflèche