Mount Ararat

Mount Ararat

Mount Ararat (Turkish: Ağrı, see below other: names and etymology) is a snow-capped, dormant volcanic cone in Turkey. It has two peaks: Greater Ararat (the highest peak in Turkey, and the entire Armenian plateau with an elevation of 5,137 m or 16,854 ft) and Lesser Ararat (with an elevation of 3,896 m or 12,782 ft).

The Ararat massif is about 40 km (25 mi) in diameter. The Iran-Turkey boundary skirts east of Lesser Ararat, the lower peak of the Ararat massif. It was in this area that, by the Tehran Convention of 1932, a border change was made in Turkey’s favour, allowing it to occupy the eastern flank of Lesser Ararat.[5]

Mount Ararat in Judeo-Christian tradition is associated with the “Mountains of Ararat” where, according to the book of Genesis, Noah’s ark came to rest.

Benefits of Cucumber on Skin, Hair and Health

By Mihran Kalaydjian, CHA
Benefits of Cucumber on Skin, Hair and Health

The greatest of health benefits of cucumber isQ revitalization of the skin. We also appreciate the tasty salads in which cucumbers are the central ingredients. Cucumbers belong to the family of the pumpkins and the zucchinis. Peeling of the dark green skin reveals a light green fleshy part. Cucumbers appear in two varieties, the pickling and the slicing ones. The pickling variety has a smaller size and measures about 2 to 4 inches in length. We even know that benefits of cucumber includes cooling effect and so they are used in soothing the eyes. But have we ever intended to study the special nutrients present in cucumber which actually contribute to this function?

Benefits of Cucumber are due to its following nutrients:
•Dietary fiber
•Folate
•Vitamin C
•Vitamin B1
•Vitamin B2
•Calcium
•Protein
•Fat
•Carbohydrates
•Iron
•Phosphorus
•Potassium
•Sugars
•Vitamin B3
•Vitamin B5
•Magnesium
•Zinc
•Silica
•Manganese

These nutrients Attribute to numerous health benefits of cucumber. Let us explore the health areas which are benefited with the consumption of cucumbers:

Benefits of Cucumber
•Skin Care: Cucumber displays diuretic, cooling and cleansing effects. These effects are beneficial for the skin. The high water content, Vitamins A, B and C and the presence of minerals like magnesium, potassium, manganese and silica make cucumbers an essential part of skin care. Facial masks containing cucumber juice are beneficial for skin tightening. Ascorbic acid and caffeic acid present in cucumbers can bring down the water retention rate which in turn diminishes the swelling and puffiness around the eyes. another benefits of Cucumber slices is that it can bring relief to the skin affected by sunburn or windburn.
•Digestion: Digestive problems like heartburn, acidity, gastritis and even ulcers can be cured by the daily consumption of fresh cucumber juice. These benefits of cucumber are availed due to its Dietary fibers which drive away the toxins from the digestive system and hence promote the digestive process. Daily consumption of cucumbers can be regarded as a remedy for constipation.
•Joint Health: Silica, present in cucumbers, promotes joint health by strengthening the connective tissues.
•Protein Digestion: Cucumber contains an enzyme called Erepsin which aids in the digestion of proteins.
•Blood Pressure: Potassium, Magnesium and fiber present in cucumber aid in the maintenance of normal blood pressure levels.
•Tapeworm Elimination: A lesser known but much effective benefits of cucumber is attributed to its seeds. Cucumber seeds are considered as natural remedies to eliminate tapeworms from the intestinal tract. The seeds are also known for their anti-inflammatory properties which have been found effective in the treatment of swellings of the mucous membranes of the nose and the throat.
•Nail Care: Cucumber, rich in silica, can prevent splitting and spoiling of the nails of the fingers and the toes.
•Gout and Arthritis: Cucumber juice is rich in vitamins A, B1, B6, C and D, Folate, Magnesium, Calcium, Potassium. This juice mixed with carrot juice can provide relief in gout patients by lowering down the uric levels.
•Teeth and Gums: Teeth and gum diseases especially pyorrhea can be treated effectively with cucumber juice. Raw foods like cucumber are rich in dietary fiber and these fibers massage in the teeth and the gums. Raw foods also increase salivation and this again brings a neutralization of the acids and the alkalis within the oral cavity.
•Diabetes: The juice has been found to be beneficial for the diabetic patients. This can be attributed to the presence of Manganese which assist in the synthesis of natural insulin.
•Kidney Care: Another lesser known benefits of cucumber is that Cucumber shows healing attributes in relation to the diseases of the urinary bladder and the kidney. The water content of cucumbers aids in the functions of the kidney by promoting urination. In fact, cucumber is the best natural diuretic.
•Hair Growth: Cucumber juices containing silica, when added to the juices of the carrots, spinach and lettuce, promote the growth of hair. Silica is present in the connective tissues of the body. It promotes hair growth and a diet rich in silica results in glossy hair and healthy bones.

It is now expected that you would savor salads garnished with cucumbers more than what you used to do before! If some you were just having cucumbers out of compulsion and based on your dieticians’ instructions, then consider relishing cucumbers with various delicious salad dishes. Form your own recipes to avail the numerous benefits of cucumber!

10 health benefits of cucumbers

By Mihran Kalaydjian. CHA
10 health benefits of cucumbers

(NaturalNews) Cucumbers are the fourth most cultivated vegetable in the world and known to be one of the best foods for your body’s overall health, often referred to as a super food. Cucumbers are often sprayed with pesticides so it is important to buy organic or even better, grow them yourself.

Here are 10 Benefits of cucumbers:

1.Quick pick me-up – Cucumbers are a good source of B vitamins. Put down your sodas and coffee and eat a cucumber slice.

2. Rehydrates body and replenishes daily vitamins – Cucumbers are 95 percent water, keeping the body hydrated while helping the body eliminate toxins. Cucumbers have most of the vitamins the body needs in a single day. Don’t forget to leave the skin on because the skin contains a good amount of vitamin C, about 10 percent of the daily-recommended allowance.

3. Skin and hair care – If you don’t like to eat the skin, it can be used for skin irritations and sunburns as aloe would be used. Place a slice over puffy eyes and its anti-inflammatory properties help reduce puffiness. The silicon and sulfur in cucumbers help to stimulate hair growth.

4. Fight cancers – Cucumber are known to contain lariciresinol, pinoresinol, and secoisolariciresinol. These three lignans have a strong history of research in connection with reduced risk of several cancer types, including breast cancer, ovarian cancer, uterine cancer and prostate cancer.

5. Home care – Eliminates a foggy mirror. Before taking a shower, rub a cucumber slice along a mirror and it will eliminate the mirror fogging up. Instead of WD40, take a cucumber slice and rub it along a squeaky hinge and your door will stop squeaking.

6. Relieves bad breath – Take a slice of cucumber and press it to the roof of your mouth with your tongue for 30 seconds, the phytochemcials will kill the bacteria in your mouth responsible for causing bad breath.

7. Hangover cure – To avoid a morning hangover or headache; eat a few cucumber slices before going to bed. Cucumbers contain enough sugar, B vitamins and electrolytes to replenish many essential nutrients, reducing the intensity of both hangover and headache.

8. Aids in weight loss and digestion – Due to its low calorie and high water content, cucumber is an ideal diet for people who are looking for weight loss. The high water content and dietary fiber in cucumbers are very effective in ridding the body of toxins from the digestive system, aiding digestion. Daily consumption of cucumbers can be regarded as a remedy for chronic constipation.

9. Cures diabetes, reduces cholesterol and controls blood pressure – Cucumber juice contains a hormone which is needed by the cells of the pancreas for producing insulin which has been found to be beneficial to diabetic patients. Researchers found that a compound called sterols in cucumbers may help reduce cholesterol levels. Cucumbers contain a lot of potassium, magnesium and fiber. These work effectively for regulating blood pressure. This makes cucumbers good for treating both low blood pressure and high blood pressure.

10. Promotes joint health, relieves gout and arthritis pain -Cucumber is an excellent source of silica, which is known to help promotes joint health by strengthening the connective tissues. They are also rich in vitamin A, B1, B6, C & D, Folate, Calcium, Magnesium, and Potassium. When mixed with carrot juice, they can relieve gout and arthritis pain by lowering the uric acid levels

The Art of Revenue Management: Correlation to Marketing

By Mihran Kalaydjian, CHA

The internet Tsunami has changed how consumers buy and hoteliers operate. Increased adoption of technology means revenue managers are more easily able to “make the right room available at the right price at the right time”. However, facing a multi-channel customer who will switch channels (computer to mobile to tablet) several times a day, identifying the ‘right guest’ at the ‘right price’ at the ‘right time’ is the secret sauce that every hotel is trying to find the recipe for.

Before the advent of internet the revenue success of a hotel largely depended on the success of its sales and marketing team, and the revenue teams took help of marketing insights when making rate decisions. Following the explosion of the internet and the emergence of revenue management as a crucial discipline, the roles have been reversed. Revenue management systems access numerous rate and occupancy reports as well as guest related data to produce rate strategies, which become the foundation of marketing promotions, packages and even publicity.

Marketing plays the role of the demand generator. In order to appeal to the customer, they need to know the customer demography, their preferences and purchase behavior. Revenue management department sits on the other side of the coin, managing demand through rate and inventory manipulation. To optimize revenue, they must have a deeper understanding of potential guests such as their price elasticity, their seasonal behavior and their likes and dislikes. In other words, revenue management and marketing complement each other, and when working together in a coordinated fashion, they can produce winning results. In recent years, leading hotels have built a culture where both departments work together to create a compounding impact on organizational profitability. There is no short cut to this and it all begins with the two departments talking to each other.

Talk, Listen, Share

So what does the marketing department know that the revenue managers are not aware of? Guests! They know who the customer is, where they come from and what interests them. They also know the finer nuances of each customer segment – leisure travellers can be over 55 or family with two kids or honeymooners and business segment include destination, in-transit, conference attendees or incentive travelers. For revenue managers, detailed information on customer preferences should be a gold mine, as it can help them to diversify their product offering and rate structure to attract the right people with right value proposition. One of our customers, Warwick Denver Hotel has successfully integrated their marketing and revenue management teams, and has created customized romance and drive packages for specific market segment which has brought them immediate results.

On the other hand, revenue managers have access to reservation reports which will help the marketing team to understand customers better with details –such as how they booked; where they come from; how long do they generally stay; etc. Answer to each of these questions lies in your historical customer data. By sharing this information, revenue management team will help the sales and marketing team to understand the hotel’s high value guests. An enlightened marketing team can create personalized campaigns relevant to different target markets and drive demand that is not solely based on price.

Each department has key pieces of information, which when shared between the two will help fill the hotel with high value customers. Without proper co-ordination between the two teams, the marketing team which is often pressured into creating perpetual campaigns, might send out communication that dilutes the hotel’s value proposition, while revenue managers might prematurely close off promotional offers to the hotel’s loyal guests which may result in negatively affecting revenue performance and guest relations.

Demand Forecasts

Forecasting is the key to the success of revenue management – its basic essence. Revenue Managers know when and from where demand is expected and needed. By bringing this information to the marketing domain, promotional strategies can be developed to drive necessary demand. For example, if marketing is aware of the lean week, they can create an offer or giveaway generating demand for the ‘right’ customers to book during this period. Similarly, if the marketing team is informed about periods of the high demand they can create innovative campaigns around it to garner a longer booking window or increased hotel spend.

The industry is littered with examples of hotels, in an attempt to increase occupancy, creating price promotions and thereby attracting price sensitive guests that abuse the facilities, run operations staff ragged with unrealistic demands and disrupt the status quo with traditional guests.

Higher Rankings in Third Party Channels

The days of working with one agency are over. The internet means that competition for guests is fierce but channel selection is critical in reaching the ‘right guest’. Finding the right channel is a balancing act between the mass appeal of the global online travel agents and the tailored proposition of the niche and local websites. According to a comScore – Cornell Hotel School Study (Search, OTAs and Online Booking: An Expanded Analysis of the Billboard Effect), an average consumer makes twelve visits to an OTA’s website, requests 7.5 pages per visit and spends almost five minutes on each page. Hotels need to understand their guests and how consumers are researching travel, with many spending up to 30 days looking into holiday options before making a reservation. Revenue managers need to ensure that properties are visible at every touch point available to their target audience.

However, customers will only book a hotel that has a strong online presence and reputation. The marketing team needs to make sure that the content in third-party sales channels is always up-to-date, complete and compelling. The most recent hotel information, photos, room amenities and policies should be accurately displayed on each listing. Further, hotel information across all third party channels should be same to maintain a uniform brand message. Strong online campaign around need dates will help revenue management team to tackle occupancy issues.

Right Package for Right Channel

One size does not fit all. A person buying through Mr&MrsSmith.com would have different preferences from the one booking through HotelTonight.com. The product proposition and promotions must be developed keeping in mind the unique selling point (USP) of the channel. Revenue management team needs to assess and reassess customers. Are they targeting the right clientele at the right channel? Could they attract higher spenders through a different campaign? In the days of social media, a discounted offer might be promoted in Facebook and Twitter to entice travellers to book from direct channel. By closely working with the marketing team, revenue managers can create package and build promotions to attract right customers.

Reward Loyalty

According to a recent study by Market Matrix, loyalty programs now rank fourth among reasons why consumers select a hotel (the top three reasons are “Location”, “Price”, and “Past Experience”). By accessing the historical data available with revenue management team, marketers can identify a loyalty programme and create special packages catering to those who are going to return. Introducing loyalty programs is also beneficial for hotels since members often act like brand advocates and recommend the hotel, spend more per room and are less sensitive to price increases compared to non-member guests. At a time when increasing distribution costs are giving revenue managers sleepless nights, creating a loyal base of customers will not only help to reduce distribution costs, but also negates the cost and effort involved in acquiring new ones. As travelers spend more time and visit more resources when researching hotel rooms, hoteliers need to stress the importance of evaluating each channel for the opportunities they present. Using different pricing strategies for different channels—all the while staying within rate parity constraints—hoteliers can optimize their demand to produce the best profits. At a time when customers are switching channels multiple times a day, finding the ‘right’ distribution channel is a puzzle everyone in the revenue management department is trying to find a solution of. There is no fixed formula, but one thing remains constant. The revenue management team needs to work closely with the marketing team for finding the optimal distribution mix.

Don’t Call It ‘Turkish’ Coffee, Unless, Of Course, It Is

By Mihran Kalaydjian, CHA

When I was in Istanbul in March, I stopped by a tiny café called Mandabatmaz, near Taksim Square. Ten Bulgarian tourists were inside, waiting for demitasses of rich, strong coffee “so thick even a water buffalo wouldn’t sink in it,” according to a translation of the cafe’s name.

I ordered a cup of the velvety coffee, crowned with a bubbly froth.

“A beautiful Turkish coffee,” said one of the Bulgarian tourists.

Back home in Bulgaria, as well as Slovenia, Hungary, Romania, Iran and Israel, they do call this “beautiful coffee” Turkish. And they make it pretty much the same way: using coffee beans ground into a fine powder, then boiled in a little brass pot that the Turks call a cezve. The coffee is ready when it rises, bubbles and nearly overflows.

The style of coffee, also known as Arabic, first came from Yemen. An Ottoman governor stationed in Yemen in the 16th century fell in love with it and introduced it to Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent, who popularized coffee in Istanbul and beyond.

A century later, Sultan Murad IV outlawed coffee, calling it an indecent drink, and chopped off the heads of those who drank it. The coffee, obviously, won out.

But ordering Turkish coffee today doesn’t go over well in some Balkan or eastern Mediterranean countries that were once part of the Ottoman Empire — even if their preparation of the coffee is remarkably similar.

In Armenia, where the Ottomans led a genocide against more than a million people between 1915 and 1923, it’s Armenian coffee. In Sarajevo, Bosnia, I once ordered a “Turkish coffee” only to be corrected by the irritated waiter: “You mean a Bosanska kafa” — a Bosnian coffee. In Cyprus, which the Turks invaded in 1974, it’s a kypriakos kafes — Cypriot coffee. (Except in the northern third of the island, which Turkey has occupied since 1974.)

In Greece, where I live and which has a tortured history with Turkey, you order an elliniko — a Greek coffee.

“It wasn’t always this way,” says Albert Arouh, a Greek food scholar who writes under a pen name, Epicurus. “When I was a kid in the 1960s, everyone in Greece called it Turkish coffee.”

Arouh says he began noticing a name change after 1974, when the Greek military junta pushed for a coup in Cyprus that provoked Turkey to invade the island.

“The invasion sparked a lot of nationalism and anti-Turkish feelings,” he says. “Some people tried to erase the Turks entirely from the coffee’s history, and re-baptized it Greek coffee. Some even took to calling it Byzantine coffee, even though it was introduced to this part of the world in the sixteenth century, long after the Byzantine Empire’s demise.”

By the 1980s, Arouh noticed it was no longer politically correct to order a “Turkish coffee” in Greek cafes. By the early 1990s, Greek coffee companies like Bravo (now owned by DE Master Blenders 1753 of the Netherlands) were producing commercials of sea, sun and nostalgic village scenes and declaring “in the most beautiful country in the world, we drink Greek coffee.”

Nationalism was one reason for the change, says Marianthi Milona, a Greek cookbook writer who grew up in Cologne, Germany. “But it was also a way to differentiate from other kinds of coffee.”

In the first half of the 20th century, the only coffee in Greece was “Turkish” coffee. Then came frappe, the iced drink made from instant Nescafe. Then espresso and cappuccino, which are now the hottest items in most Greek cafes. “So the ‘coffee’ — the first coffee — had to have a name too,” she said. “And because we are in Greece, we decided it must be Greek.”

In Athens, my uncle Thanassis, who has been making this coffee for more than 60 years, waits until the water in the pot is warm before adding the powdery grounds. He stirs the mixture until it looks creamy. In Istanbul, I noticed the man making the coffee at Mandabatmaz adding a few drops of hot water to spoonfuls of coffee and sugar, then whip-stirring the mixture into a dark paste. He then added more hot water to the pot before boiling it to velvety perfection over a gas flame.

My uncle and I tried the Mandabatmaz method at his house in Athens, with Turkish coffee I’d brought him as a gift from a market in Kadıköy on the Asian side of Istanbul. The coffee was stronger than the Loumidis brand my uncle usually buys but he agreed that it tasted great.

“To Suleiman the Magnificent,” he said, holding up his demitasse in a toast. “Thanks for the coffee.”

Abovyan or Abovian (Armenian: Աբովյան)

Posted by Mihran Kalaydjian, CHA

Abovyan or Abovian (Armenian: Աբովյան) is a city in Armenia in the province of Kotayk. It is located 16 kilometres (10 miles) northeast of Yerevan and 36 kilometres (22 miles) southeast of the province centre Hrazdan. In 2009, the estimated population of the city was 46,000, down from 59,000 at the 1989 census. The city covers an area of 11 square kilometres (4.2 square miles).

With a motorway and railway running through the city connecting Yerevan with the areas of the northeast, Abovyan is considered a satellite city of the Armenian capital. Therefore, Abovyan is sometimes referred to be the “Northern Gate of Yerevan”.

History

During his researches in 1960, historian Mesrop Smbatiants found king Argishti I’s Urartian cuneiform which narrates about the conquest of Darani (the pre-Urartian name of modern-day Abovyan area) of Ulusan country. Excavations and found materials proved that the area was inhabited since the end of the 4th century BC. During the excavations, the remains of a fortress, a cemetery and old shelters were also found with several objects and remnants of three stages of the Bronze Age.

During the ancient Kingdom of Armenia, the western area of modern-day Abovyan was part of the Kotayk canton of Ayrarat province while the eastern area was part of Mazaz canton of the same province.

Between the 5th and 7th centuries AD, the region became under the administration of the Armenian noble dynasty of Amatuni.

In the Middle Ages, the area was known as Elar. According to the Armenian historian Stepanos Orbelian of the 13th century, Elar was awarded to Liparit Orbelian of the Orbelian Dynasty by prince Atabek Ivane.

Under the Persian rule, Elar was part of the Erivan Khanate. After the Russian conquest of Armenia in 1828, Elar became part of the Armenian Oblast and subsequently of the Erivan Governorate which was formed in 1849-1850.

Until 1961, the small village of Elar (part of modern-day Abovyan) was the largest settlement of the area, when it was renamed Abovyan in the honour of the Armenian writer Khachatur Abovian. Two years later in 1963, the town was founded on the same area by the decision of the Soviet government.

The modern city of Abovyan was built in 1962-1963 on a plateau located between Hrazdan and Azat rivers. The city has rapidly developed as an industrial centre for the entire Armenian SSR.

The Surb Stepanos medieval church (renovated in 1851) stands on a nearby hill in Elar district.

More than 90% of the population is ethnic Armenian, mainly diasporan Armenians relocated from Syria, Iran and Lebanon during the 1960s. Minor communities of Kurds, Yazidis, Russians and Assyrians are also found in Abovyan.

Geography

Abovyan is built on Kotayk plateau between the rivers of Hrazdan, Azat and Getar at a height of 1450 meters above sea level. It is surrounded with Geghama mountain range from the northwest, Hatis and Gutanasar mountains from the north, Hrazdan gorge from the west and the heights of Nork from the south. The climate is continental and dry with relatively hot summers and cold winters.

There is a small lake in the city called “Akna”.

Arzni town-resort is located only 6 kilometres (4 miles) west of Abovyan

Economy

Abovyan is a quite industrialized city. It has many large enterprises among which are the factories of concrete construction, stone processing and chemical productions. The town is home to one of the leading beer producers in the Armenian market, Kotayk Brewery, owned by Gagik Tsarukyan’s Multi Group Holding. The factory produces a variety of lager beer under the brands Kotayk, Erebuni and Abovyan’s Tshani. Several companies in Abovyan export the entire volume of their industrial output.

Sport and education

FC Kotayk Abovian is one of the oldest football clubs in Armenia. Like many other football teams in the country, FC Kotayk was forced to default from the Armenian football league and consequently from professional football since 2005, due to financial crisis.

The short-lived King Delux F.C. of Abovyan played a single season in the Armenian First League of 2012-13.

The municipality of Abovyan runs a sport school in the city. The city is home to the Abovyan City Stadium with a capacity of 5,500 seats.

Abovyan has 10 public education schools, 9 kindergartens and 2 state intermediate colleges. It is also home to the Abovyan University named after Levon Orbeli. The city hosts 2 significant institutions of science in Amrneia: The Republican Hospital of tuberculosis and the Institute of Biological Microbes of the National Academy of Sciences of Armenia.

Many cultural centres operate in the city, such as the cultural palace of Abovyan, the community creative centre of children and teenagers, the musical school, the art school, the public library and the museum of Abovyan.

Mihran Kalaydjian Hospitality Advisors

Mihran Kalaydjian Hospitality Advisors

Mihran Kalaydjian Hospitality Consulting Firm has set in place a strong foundation which will take it to its next phase of development. Its strategic blueprint will spearhead its growth and further establish Mihran Kalaydjian Hospitality Consulting Firm as a leading and well established Firm hotel management company. It has a dedicated and experienced senior leadership team who is focused on capitalizing on our strengths and identifying opportunities to ensure the ongoing success of the company.

Mihran Kalaydjan Hospitality Consulting Firm has formulated a branding strategy to enable the Group to capture new hotel management business in the future. Part of this strategy includes creating a portfolio of three brands with differentiated propositions: Collection featuring a collection of boutique hotels with unique identities, Mihran Kalaydjian Hospitality Consulting Firm comprising upscale Dorsett Grand and midscale Dorsett; and value-led Silka Hotels.

By its very essence, a hotel is a place of mingling, diversity, interacting differences and blend. Through our new tagline, “Open new Frontiers in Hospitality”, I wanted to place openness at the core of our mission: openness to others and openness to a new way of perceiving hotels, of managing our impact on both the environment and the communities our hotels are a part of.

The key reasons for Mihran Kalaydjian Hospitality Consulting Firm success include recognition of our employees as our prime resource and putting continuous emphasis on their training and development for enhancement of their professional skills. Strong work ethics, mutual trust, close teamwork, professionalism and continuous endeavor for improvement of quality are some of the other guiding principles of our corporate philosophy.

Kind regards
Mihran Kalaydjian

Thanksgiving Day in Canada

Posted by Mihran Kalaydjian, CHA
Thanksgiving Day in Canada

Thanksgiving Day in Canada has been a holiday on the second Monday of October since 1957. It is a chance for people to give thanks for a good harvest and other fortunes in the past year.

What do people do?

Many people have a day off work on the second Monday of October. They often use the three-day Thanksgiving weekend to visit family or friends who live far away, or to receive them in their own homes. Many people also prepare a special meal to eat at some point during the long weekend. Traditionally, this included roast turkey and seasonal produce, such as pumpkin, corn ears and pecan nuts. Now, the meal may consist of other foods, particularly if the family is of non-European descent.

The Thanksgiving weekend is also a popular time to take a short autumn vacation. This may be the last chance in a while for some people to use cottages or holiday homes before winter sets in. Other popular activities include: outdoor breaks to admire the spectacular colors of the Canadian autumn; hiking; and fishing. Fans of the teams in the Canadian Football League may spend part of the weekend watching the Thanksgiving Day Classic matches.

Public life

Thanksgiving Day is national public holiday in Canada. Many people have the day off work and all schools and post offices are closed. Many stores and other businesses and organizations are also closed. Public transport services may run to a reduced timetable or may not run at all.

Background

The native peoples of the Americas held ceremonies and festivals to celebrate the completion and bounty of the harvest long before European explorers and settlers arrived in what is now Canada. Early European thanksgivings were held to give thanks for some special fortune. An early example is the ceremony the explorer Martin Frobisher held in 1578 after he had survived the long journey in his quest to find a northern passage from Europe to Asia.

Many thanksgivings were held following noteworthy events during the 18th century. Refugees fleeing the civil war in the United States brought the custom of an annual thanksgiving festival to Canada. From 1879, Thanksgiving Day was held every year but the date varied and there was a special theme each year. The theme was the “Blessings of an abundant harvest” for many years. However, Queen Victoria’s golden and diamond jubilees and King Edward VII’s coronation formed the theme in later years.

From the end of the First World War until 1930, both Armistice Day and Thanksgiving Day were celebrated on the Monday closest to November 11, the anniversary of the official end of hostilities in World War I. In 1931, Armistice Day was renamed Remembrance Day and Thanksgiving Day was moved to a Monday in October. Since 1957, Thanksgiving Day has always been held on the second Monday in October.

Symbols

Thanksgiving Day in Canada is linked to the European tradition of harvest festivals. A common image seen at this time of year is a cornucopia, or horn, filled with seasonal fruit and vegetables. The cornucopia, which means “Horn of Plenty” in Latin, was a symbol of bounty and plenty in ancient Greece. Turkeys, pumpkins, ears of corn and large displays of food are also used to symbolize Thanksgiving Day.

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Is Walking as Good a Workout as Running?

Posted by Mihran Kalaydjian

There are many reasons why people start running: to stay slim, boost energy, or snag that treadmill next to our longtime gym crush (please follow our gym etiquette tips before making any moves though!). Running can help keep the heart healthy, improve mood, and stave off sickness; plus recent studies have found running is a great way to lose and maintain weight. But research suggests going full speed isn’t the only route to good health.

Now Walk (or Run?) It Out – The Need-to-Know

While walking can provide many of the same health benefits associated with running, recent research suggests running may be the better bet for those looking to shed some pounds. Unsurprisingly, people expend two-and-a-half times more energy running than walking, whether that’s on the track or on the treadmill. So for a 160-lb person, running burns about 800 calories an hour compared to about 300 calories walking. And that equates to a pretty sizeable slice of pizza (who doesn’t love cheat day rewards?).

More interesting, a recent study found that even when runners and walkers expended equal amounts of energy (meaning walkers spent more time exercising and covered greater distances), runners still lost more weight. Not only did the runners begin the study slimmer than the walkers; they also had a better chance of maintaining their BMI and waist circumference.

That difference could possibly be explained by another recent study, which suggests that running regulates our appetite hormones better than walking. After running or walking, participants were invited to a buffet, where walkers consumed about 50 calories more than they had burned and runners ate almost 200 calories fewer than they’d burned. Runners also had higher levels of the hormone peptide YY, which may suppress appetite.

Beyond losing weight, walking may still be super beneficial to our health. Researchers looked at data from the National Runners’ Health Study and the National Walkers’ Health Study and found that people who expended the same amount of calories — regardless of whether they were walking or running — saw pretty much the same health benefits. We’re talking a reduced risk of hypertension, high cholesterol, and diabetes, and better cardiovascular health.

But even the most time-efficient athletes might want to think twice before sprinting away all the time. Running puts more stress on the body and increases the risk for injuries like runner’s knee, hamstring strains, and the dreaded shin splits (which plague even the most consistent runners). And of course, some people simply prefer to take things slow.

Walk This Way — Your Action Plan

When running isn’t in the cards, walking with weights might be the next best solution to getting in an energized workout. One study showed walking at a 4 mph on the treadmill with hand and ankle weights was comparable to jogging at 5 mph without the extra poundage. (And if anyone looks twice, hand weights are totally in right now, don’t they know?)

No matter which pace feels right, always make sure the body is ready for action. Sixty percent of runners experience an injury serious enough to keep them from being active. So remember that a sweat session may be too strenuous if talking to that workout buddy leaves us gasping for air (aka the “talk test” FAIL). Listening to the body and completing a proper warm–up and cool down are all ways to prevent injuries, so stay informed and spend more time running on the treadmill (and less time running to the doctor).

Bored with both walking and running? There are about, oh, a bazillion other ways to keep active, from yoga and pilates to weight lifting and mountain biking, and pretty much everything in between. Don’t be afraid to try new activities to stay happy and healthy!

The Takeaway

Regular cardio (at any speed) can help keep the body healthy, not to mention improve mood and energy levels. But, lap for lap, running burns about 2.5 times more calories than walking. Running may also help control appetite, so runners may lose more weight than walkers no matter how far the walkers go. Still, running isn’t for everyone; going full-speed might increase injury risk. Adding hand and ankle weights can help pick up the intensity while maintaining a slower pace.

10 Tips For Growing Your LinkedIn Network

By Mihran Kalaydjian, CHA
10 Tips For Growing Your LinkedIn Network

LinkedIn not only keeps track of your professional contacts, but it tells you about second and third degree connections, so that you can expand your network and reach out to new people in your industry. Don’t miss out on this powerful aspect of LinkedIn.

Interested in growing your LinkedIn Network?

Here are some tips on how to build strong connections, leverage your network and generate more sales:
1.Remember to import all your email contacts to see who’s are already on LinkedIn. Select the clients,
employees, business partners, friends, and even family members that you’d like to connect with.

2.Add current and past colleagues to your network from the companies you’ve listed in your profile. Do the same with people you went to school or university with.

3.Add your personal LinkedIn link to your email signature, on other social networking sites, on your business cards and website.

4.Follow an in-person meeting with a LinkedIn connection request.

5.Add some context and details when you send a request. Don’t be generic. Don’t be that guy.

6.Find new customers, suppliers, partnerships, experts, and other valuable people by joining relevant groups. Brainstorm companies, industries, your geographical area. What about alumni groups?

7.Join groups that your target market joins, so that you can interact with them and increase your visibility.

8.Define your target groups and use the advanced search option to search for people. If you find someone that you’d like to connect with, see if you share any connections. Ask that mutual connection if he or she can make an introduction to the new person.

9.Never use an introduction to send a sales letter! Be respectful of everyone in your network.
10.Sign up for the groups’s daily email digest. This way, you get the highlights without having to go back to visit group pages every day.