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Chemainus Totem Poles One Step Closer

Mayor Jon Lefebure Renews Promise of Two 'Chemainus' Red Cedars

It is now only 24 months until the Chemainus Totem Poles will be raised in Prestonpans at the 6th Conference of the Global Mural Arts and Cultural Tourism Association. So the first stage of the project is now gearing up.

Visiting Chemainus again on September 7th [where the inaugural Global Conference was held in 1998], Prestoungrange and Lady Prestoungrange along with on-the-ground co-ordinators Dr Karl Schutz and Anne Wills, met Jon Lefebure, the Mayor of Chemainus. Jon and his wife Marlene confirmed they are ready as soon as the logistics are properly organised to provide 2 x 40' red cedars for shipping to Scotland with their bark removed. The felling by the City's Forester will be a photo-opportunity for the Chemainus press as will the trees' preparation and transportation to the docks. [ Illustrated below are the Mayor (left) and Prestoungrange heading for the woods and three perspectives of the red cedars they found.]

Click on images to enlarge

Once the red cedars arrive in Scotland, and it is expected to be at Leith Docks, their transportation to Prestonpans is under the supervision of Scotland Project Leader Kristine Cunningham.

Mayor Travelling to Scotland for Raising the Poles in August 2006

As luck would have it, Jon Lefebure has relatives living in Glasgow and good Scottish roots of his own. So he has gladly accepted the invitation to come to the Pole Raising Ceremonies and the Conference in August 2006. Before then of course there is a range of educational activities planned with Kenny Grieve's help, and the National Museum of Scotland which has a number of excellent artefacts dating back to the early 20th century.

A competition will then be run locally in Prestonpans for suggested historical elements to incorporate in the carving on the Totem Poles - with the overarching theme of: "Thank You Chemainus for a Great Idea - Painting Murals Telling the History of the Town".

Once the design parameters are agreed upon, First Nations carvers from Vancouver Island will travel to Prestonpans to join with local carvers, and to be watched by visiting groups, to ensure that we accomplish the carving and painting well in time for August 2006. They will also offer teach-ins at The Prestoungrange Gothenburg on First Nations culture.

Also ... Catching Up on Chemainus Developements

With murals dating back some 20 years now, it's no surprise that maintenance and repair are high on their agenda. In fact total repainting of the Chinese store with its Black Cat and Buckingham cigarette advertising was in hand - captured by none other than UK's Channel 4 TV film crew making a travel documentary - fame indeed.

It was also a chance to renew one's appreciation of some of the fine work in the town, including Rotary's gift of an Outdoor Theatre, and the latest transporation tour vehicles for gongoozlers.

Published Date: September 7th 2004

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