Harbour’s End pathway & kiosk opening celebration

web_from-AlyceShead photo by Alyce Shead

What a super day!

The gathered crowd learned about the great team effort needed to fund and build the pathway and kiosk, install the net-metered solar power, and create the interpretive panels. These latter outline the natural history, First Nations history, and first 50 years of modern settlers’ history.

With free power — no BC Hydro bills to pay — running the PA system, Saanich First Nation elder, educator, and historian John Elliot blessed the undertaking and sang a traditional canoeing song about coming home. Three other elders attended, former Tsawout chief and councillor (44 years!) Lou Claxton, educator and archivist Adelynne Claxton, and young elder, Belinda Claxton, who was raised in the SENĆOŦEN (sen-chaw’-then) language and steeped in the culture. Tsawout Lands Officer Gwen Underwood arranged and accompanied this delegation.

CRD Director Wayne McIntyre and Partners Creating Pathways chair Jean Gelwicks led the abundant thank yous for the project, with overarching thanks to CRD for its Active Transportation Innovative Infrastructure grant and top-up funds from the Salt Spring Island Transportation Commission.

Five of the volunteers who helped design and build the structures spoke of their and their co-workers’ contributions.

Finally, Belinda (Seliliye) spoke about the Ganges Harbour’s meaning and uses to those who knew and loved it, for thousands of years, one familiar shore of so many in the southern Gulf islands.