2018 Sherlock Holmes Birthday Brunch

The Stormy Petrels of B.C. will, once again, be celebrating the birthday of the great detective on Saturday, January 6th 2018!

If you happen to be in the Vancouver area that day, we would love to see you!

There is no program, no agenda, no toasts (unless someone is so moved) nor adventure for discussion.  (sadly, no musings from Sheldon). It is a time of fellowship and food.

Where:  The White Spot Restaurant (the fireplace room) West Georgia/Cardero

When:  Saturday, Jan. 6, 2018 at 11:30 am

If you are able to come, please e-mail Fran as soon as possible so she can confirm numbers with the restaurant.


December 2017 Meeting

cardboard box

“There was a bench at the end of the path, and we all sat down while Holmes examined, one by one, the articles which Lestrade had handed to him.”

What were these “articles”?  Was this a prank? Why did quiet, little Susan Cushing receive these in the post?

The Adventure of the Cardboard Box” was first published in The Strand Magazine and in Harper’s Weekly in January 1893.

This adventure appeared in The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, but was supressed, not to be put in print again for 23 years when it appeared in His Last Bow in 1917.

The matter of the “thought-reading” episode:  While the tale was suppressed, Doyle thought to use this selection in “The Resident Patient“.

So many issues to discuss at the next study session of the Stormy Petrels of BC., which will take place on Tuesday, December 5th at 7:00 pm at our usual Hampton Place lounge.

We will, once again set up our Sherlockian Holiday Tree,

Tree Ornaments

(Some of our ornaments)

and we will also set up the Stormy Petrel “company store” where members can do a bit of holiday shopping.

If you would like any more information, please contact Fran at franziskah@shaw.ca

Bonus question: what are the names of the three Cushing sisters?

cardboard box



Report on The Stormy Petrels’ 30th Anniversary Celebrations

A warm, sunny day on the 16th of September brought 26 Petrels and guests together for a celebration.  We were very pleased to have eight members of the Sound of the Baskervilles – the Sherlockian group from Seattle, WA join us.

30th eattle ladies

Shannon, Kashena, Margie


Allen Nelson

30th petrel group

Len, Andy, Kat, Sarah, Krista Lee

The event was held at the Billy Bishop Legion in the heart of Kitsalano in Vancouver.  Brian Collins, a member of the Billy Bishop told us about the legion and its namesake.

The Legion

We began with a welcome speech from Fran, who thanked her 30th Anniversary Committee, without whom the event could not have taken place: Elsa and Len Haffenden, Bob Coghill and Brian Collins, with help from wife Lea.

The table was laden with all sorts of wonderful things to win. Put your tickets into the bowl in front of the item you wish to win. The more tickets, the better the odds. Tickets were given to attendees in their swag bags, and were also awarded as prizes.

30th draw table

Several people donated items to our table.

Thank you to:

Christopher Redmond for some “dead rats” (various books, etc.)

Peggy Perdue for various items from her collection

Dr. J.C. Bernthal for his thesis on Agatha Christie

Dr. Robert Katz for the matchbooks from the 1952 BSI dinner

John Hopley Neligan for various DVDs, books and Baker Street Tea

Also donating were Sarah Crauder, Rebecca Bollwitt and Fran Martin

The matchbooks and tea (from Murchie’s) were two of the items everyone received in the swag bags, along with Stormy Petrel mug, pen and notepaper, chocolate magnifying lens with Holmes silhouette (from Charlie’s Chocolate Factory), a puzzle book (created by Fran) and a collection of Stormy Petrel papers printed up in a publication entitled “A string of Pearls” (papers written by various Petrels over a span of 30 years collected by Len and put together with assistance from Bob)

We played the W.H.O said it game, which was also enjoyed previously at the dinner in March.

Given a quote from the canon, hold up the “W” if you believe Watson said it, turn it around to show the “H” if you think Holmes said it, or show none if you believe “O”ther said it.

Margie Deck and Sheila Holtgrieve brought their game all the way from Seattle. A picture game, similar to the game we played at the 2nd International Holmesian Summit.

30th 3 musketeers

Sheila, Fran and Margie

Len also handed out a picture game….try to identify the adventure from one coded picture.

We had two speakers. Bob Coghill who presented his paper on Billy and David Haugen from Seattle, who spoke on “Sherlock Holmes – He Unites Us and Divides Us.” (David has agreed to have this paper published in the next edition of the Petrel Flyer)

Bob Coghill, BSI, delivering his paper “Billy Grows Up” which was first published in Canadian Holmes magazine Spring 2017.


Bob Coghill, MBt, BSI

There was a skit performed by the Petrel Players. We performed a skit written in 2005 by one of our beloved members who had passed away several years ago, but left us with “Henry Baker – Your goose is cooked!”

In between all the jollification, there was a lovely lunch and a delightful tea with a celebration cake.

Gordon Roberts, a local thespian and Petrel, who was planning on performing a bit from his play “Holmes and Watson Save the Empire” was unable to attend, but sent us a song entitled “The Science of Deduction” from that play. Sheldon Goldfarb (as Dr. Watson) and Prof. Paul Kingsbury (as Sherlock Holmes) agreed to read it as a poem.

30th sheldon and paul

Prof. Paul Kingsbury, Sheldon Goldfarb

Brian read out several “telegrams” which he received, after which the clock struck 4 and the celebrations came to an end.


Brian Collins

Several people did stay behind to enjoy each others company and catch up on things.  Drinks and pizzas were ordered.

Brian’s history of Billy Bishop, Bob’s paper on “Billy”, and the telegrams are all printed out in the next edition of The Petrel Flyer, along with more photos.

To receive the Petrel Flyer, please contact Fran Martin at: franziskah@shaw.ca