Newcastle Island is a Marine Provincial Park operated by the Snuneymuxw FN and is only accessible by boat or via the pedestrian ferry in Nanaimo. The Park provides camping and amenities for paddlers and other visitors.
On Saturday September 16, BC Marine Trails led a flotilla with about 150 sea kayakers that paddled from Nanaimo to Newcastle Island to celebrate the new Marine Trail. The Snuneymuxw FN had a Coast Salish canoe (that fits 20 people) and upon arrival to the Island we were greeted with a welcome song and dancing ceremony.
Guest speakers included the Honourable David A. Anderson (Former Minister of the Environment), Leonard Krog (MLA for Nanaimo) and Phil Kent (Chair of the Island Coastal Economic Trust and Mayor of Duncan). Our FN hosts prepared a traditional Coast Salish dinner and keynote speaker Richard Beamish gave a presentation on the Straight of Georgia’s marine ecosystem.
Other activities over the weekend included a sea kayak race, workshops and many prizes to be won.
Such a beautiful event and passionate people!