Saturday August 14, 2010

Local News

Return Of The Paddlers

Alexandra Morton to visit Squiala during river rally



                                                                                                                                                            Voice file photo  

Paddle for Wild Salmon pull into Island 22 April 29 as part of the Get Out Migration to Victoria.


he Salmon Are Sacred group are planning another trip down the Fraser to rally in Vancouver on October 25. The group has 160-spaces open to experienced canoeists or kayakers. They'll be overnight at Island 22 on October 20. Alexandra Morton will be on hand to speak about saving the salmon and the rally.


The last paddle trip from Hope to Vancouver Island passed through Chilliwack late April prior to marching on Victoria in a bid to stop fish farms in BC's coastal waters.


Organizer, Elena Edwards, told the Voice in an e-mail that this time the group won't be stopping at Island 22 however they may alter those plans by paddle time. There will be salmon ceremony/events at nightly stopovers at which the public will be invited to join.


"Due to the days being shorter and the time allowed for this paddle, there will be fewer stopovers. There will be an event in Hope the evening of the 19th hosted by members of  Chawathil with the theme of "Hope for Wild Salmon". Alexandra Morton will be there and will be on the paddle as well as a number of Grand Chiefs and other First Nations Chiefs from along the Fraser River and a number of MP's and MLA's and others," said Edwards.


"We will be staying in Skwah territory for the first night, most likely Matsqui (GVRD park under the Mission Bridge) on the second night, Kwantlan on the third. On the 23rd October there will be an event at the Fraser River Discovery Center where Fin Donnely and others will talk about the importance of wild salmon, after which the paddle will continue to either Musqueam or Squamish."

                                       Paddle organizers in Chilliwack last week. Chris Gadsden photo.


Salmon Are Sacred has spaces for 160 people in canoes and calls on experienced paddlers, Tribal Journeys canoe teams and kayakers to join Alexandra Morton, Elena Edwards, First Nations leaders and our flotilla in pulling together for wild salmon as we journey down the Fraser River. The paddle wil finish in Vancouver for a rally on October 25th.


The migration will be officially launched at a “Hope for Wild Salmon” event on 19th October in Hope with other events en route including Chilliwack (20th), Mission (21st) and New Westminster (23rd). First Nations will take a leading role and paddlers include Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, Chief Bob Chamberlin and Grand Chief Saul Terry. John Cummins MP, Fin Donnelly MP, Vicki Huntington MLA, Spencer Chandra Herbert MLA, Michelle Mungall MLA and Peter Julian MP will also paddle various stretches.


Vancouver Rally Date: Monday, October 25, 2010 (All day)

The Paddle for Wild Salmon flotilla, including Alexandra Morton, Grand Chief Stuart Phillip, Chief Bob Chamberlin, Grand Chief Saul Terry, Fin Donnelly MP and friends, will culminate in Vancouver for a march and rally in Vancouver. Together we can speak for wild salmon: tell the Cohen Commission and the provincial and federal governments that wild salmon come first!

Darren Blaney of the Homalco First Nation will also lead a canoe team across the Salish Sea to join the paddlers in Vancouver on 25th October with other canoes hopefully making the journey from Victoria, Cowichan Valley and Washington. Kayakers from the Pipedreams Project will leave Kitimat on 1st September and plan to join the Paddle for Wild Salmon in October.

10:00am-11:00am Flotilla gathers in Vancouver Harbour

11:00am Stand Up for Wild Salmon march from Vanier Park, across Burrard Bridge to DFO's Vancouver office and then outside the Cohen Commission at the Law Courts.

12:30pm Rally for Wild Salmon at Vancouver Art Gallery, followed by a visit to Costco.

There are room for 160 paddlers. If you are interested in paddling for wild salmon, supporting the paddlers on their journey or helping to coordinate the rally, please contact Elena Edwards here or Don Staniford here.     

To see the Voice's April Paddle For Wild Salmon story and photo gallery go here.

Photo above:  Ernie Crey (centre), Elena Edwards (second from left), Eddie Gardner(third from right), Don Staniford, George and Cathy Noordegraaf (centre back) and Chris Gadsden (second from right). Gwen O'Mahoney not shown.


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