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Gwaii Haanas Legacy Pole - A Fond Farewell

Submitted by Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve, National Marine Conservation Area Reserve,  and Haida Heritage Site http://www.parkscanada.gc.ca/gwaiihaanas

Skidegate, Haida Gwaii: July 23, 2013

Around 500 people gathered at the Haida Heritage Centre to say farewell to the Gwaii Haanas Legacy Pole as it began the next stage of its journey to Gwaii Haanas.

At least 100 people helped carry the pole out of the carving shed to the beach in front of the Haida Heritage Centre be loaded onto a truck and later a barge for the trip by sea of approximately 40 nautical miles to Lyell Island.

 Parks Canada / Jason Shafto

Many hands helped carry the Gwaii Haanas Legacy Pole out of the carving shed on July 23. Next stop: Windy Bay.

The pole will be raised at Hlk’yah GawGa (Windy Bay) on August 15 to honour 20 years of cooperative management between the Government of Canada and the Haida Nation. The pole, commissioned by the Archipelago Management Board (made up of equal Haida Nation and Government of Canada representatives and recognized worldwide as a model for natural resource management), will stand as testament to this relationship for years to come.

This pole is also the first to be raised in Gwaii Haanas in over 130 years, helping to build a connection with the historic poles still standing in the villages of SGang Gwaay (also a UNESCO World Heritage Site) and K’uuna Llnagaay (Skedans).

The carvers will travel to Hlk’yah GawGa in early August to finish the pole in situ. Jaalen Edenshaw, the lead carver on the project said that finishing work in Gwaii Haanas at an old village site was an important part of the process and he was looking forward to this extended time in the land of his ancestors.

 

Parks Canada / Jason Shafto

The pole was loaded onto a barge and is being towed to Windy Bay by the Gwaii Haanas II

Don’t’ forget! For those who are not able to travel to Windy Bay, join us at the Haida Heritage Centre for a live broadcast of the pole raising and other activities on August 15 from 11-3pm.

Also, everyone is welcome at the Community Celebration on August 17 at the George Brown Recreation Centre.

Check out the Legacy pole video at www.haidanation.ca.






 

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