As the wood fire filled Wawadiťła (Mungo Martin House) with smoke, students in their yellow t-shirts, guests and dignitaries sang Oh Canada. As it has been at every Provincial Heritage Fair, this day was the highlight of the 2017 Provincial: the showcase of student projects. Our featured photo shows the opening ceremony for the showcase in Wawadiťła, the Northwest Coast long house next to the Royal BC Museum where the projects were displayed.
Lekungen/Songhee elder Butch Dick welcomed us with a short speech and song but also acknowledged the tragedy of the forest fires ablaze in the BC interior at that time.
Her Honour the Honourable Judith Guichon gave a thoughtful speech celebrating the students for their interest in our province’s history and also asked us to remember the thousands of people who were displaced from their homes because of the fires.
Other dignitaries spoke to students about the importance of history in our lives including MP Murray Rankin, MLA Andrew Weaver and the BCHFS president Britney Quail. Students Veronica Xia and Julia Fabro-Smith were the MCs.
Forty students from across British Columbia attended the five days of the Fair staying in the residences of the University of Victoria. Their first events included a tour of the First Peoples House on the campus, a talk by UVic history professor John Lutz, and team building games led by the Alumni Team.
You can read about the various daily activities and visits of the 2017 Provincial Fair as reported by the Alumni in the posts below.
Day one: Arrival at UVic
Day four: Showcase of Student Projects with Words of Advice
Day five: Goodbyes
Alumni Benjamin concluded by describing the Provincial as “a fun filled, hot, and sunny week, so it was quite poetic that the clouds started to roll in shortly after things wrapped up; as if they were curtains closing on the ‘final act’ of the 2017 BC Provincial Heritage Fair.”
Kudos to organizers Mary Campone, Kevin McKeown, Evan Fryer, and Jennifer Iredale.